It always happens about this time of year – spring has sprung and with summer break imminent, school children of all ages are chafing against school day restrictions. High school seniors usually suffer most of all. There’s a reason the term “senioritis” was coined. In fact, the parody website Urban Dictionary defines Senioritis as:
noun. A crippling disease that strikes high school seniors. Symptoms include: laziness, an over-excessive wearing of track pants, old athletic shirts, sweatpants, athletic shorts, and sweatshirts. Also features a lack of studying, repeated absences, and a generally dismissive attitude. The only known cure is a phenomenon known as Graduation.
Unfortunately for a group of North Carolina teens, some very bad choices turned their standard year-end senior prank into a tragic accident that left one teenage boy badly injured.
It all started when a group of masked high school students and alumni, who, authorities report, had been drinking, decided to end the year with a bang by pulling a boat painted with school symbols up to the Leesville High School cafeteria doors. To “cement” the prank, they filled the boat with dry concrete so the school administration would have a hard time removing it.
At that time, they decided to make their escape in one student’s truck. A reported five or six students, including 17-year-old Anthony Bunn, leapt into the truck’s bed. The 18-year-old driver then put the truck in reverse and accelerated at a rapid speed before trying to perform a J-turn (a turn in which a driver turns a vehicle going reverse 180 degrees and puts it in forward gear so it’s going in the same direction.) At that point, the truck overturned, pinning Bunn beneath the truck’s roof at the ground.
The teens then decided to take Bunn to the hospital themselves instead of reporting the wreck. By the time police were notified, by hospital staff, that a wreck had occurred, the rest of the teens were reportedly trying to use another truck to right the overturned truck themselves.
Officers found alcohol and a beer funnel at the scene. The driver, 18-year-old Alec William Esoda, was arrested with a blood alcohol level of .08. He has now been released on bond for charges of felony serious injury by vehicle, DWI, provisional DWI and reckless driving.
That night, two young lives were changed as the result of a careless prank. Anthony Bunn is in critical condition at Rex Hospital in Leesville while Alec Esoda faces criminal charges. Unfortunately, it is all too easy for teenagers, whether in the heat of the moment or egged on by peers, to make dangerous choices such as DWI or riding in the back of a dangerous vehicle. Even normally well behaved teens can fall prey to the heat of the moment.
Have you or anyone you know been injured as the result of recklessness? Sadly, teenage pranks can result in injuries that require long term care and potential for loss of income. If you are experiencing such a tragedy, call MLN Law at (404) 531-9700 for caring, aggressive representation.