Petty Crimes Gone Viral


Madeline Phillips, Guest Writer

Over the past few weeks, videos of teenagers committing small, petty crimes have been surfacing and going viral. This became a trend known as ‘Devious Licks’ and it highlights the issues of theft among young kids and teenagers. These videos consist of high school students stealing things such as toilets, soap dispensers, bathroom stall walls, lockers, etc. and filming it to post on a popular social media platform known as TikTok.

Since this trend has started to affect our high school, I interviewed Sahar Nurani, a senior at our school. After asking her and a few other students from other grades how they would discipline the students participating in this trend, I got a common response from all of them. Almost every answer had similar disciplinary actions consisting of things like fines or detention. Sahar explained that she would have them pay for all the damages they caused and instead of expulsion have them participate in ISS for a week or two depending on the severity of the theft. Another possible solution to this could be that instead of acting after the crime has been committed, we act before it happens. So in this case Sahar’s idea was to have a teacher or staff member moderating the entrance to the bathrooms that are being affected the most. 

As I was looking more into this trend I noticed a common factor in most of the videos posted. Majority of the students participating in this trend are male. Now I asked Sahar why she thinks that’s the case and she tells me that “Boys think it’s funny to destroy things, their sense of humor is prone to being more reckless, so they don’t think about the consequences while they are participating.” I completely agree with that statement, now that isn’t saying that girls don’t do this as well, because they definitely do. But if you’ve ever watched a show called ‘Ridiculousness’ you notice that most of the people participating in those videos are male. This is because according to researchers “Men tend to take more risks than women do and also seem to be ahead of women in engaging in risky behavior.”

Now have you ever wondered where this trend came from or why it became so popular? Well “This trend has become popular because of Tiktok, and the fact that people think it’s funny to damage school property as a joke” Sahar tells us. I also had the curiosity of wondering why most of the students are high school age and not middle school age. You would think that because middle schoolers aren’t as mature, and would be the ones participating. Surprisingly enough the majority of them are high school students and Sahar thinks it’s because highs choolers are reaching the end of their required education. 

Overall this trend is becoming a bigger problem, as teenagers have taken these things to the next level. Some kids are committing more than just theft to be a part of this trend.  I have noticed that there is a new trend becoming a thing where it’s the opposite of stealing things. So that involves taking things from your house and leaving them in school. These are just common household items that students leave in hallways or classrooms. I personally think that this trend is better that the ‘devious licks’ trend since there aren’t any crimes being committed, but I still think it’s immature to participate in either one. Hopefully over time this trend will die down.