Vandals steal copper, damage toilets at vacant school - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Vandals steal copper, damage toilets at vacant school

(WMC-TV) - Vandals caused thousands of dollars worth of damage to a Memphis City School property in the past few years.

Memphis City Schools has been actively trying to sell buildings it believes still have market appeal, but recent vandalism is making it difficult.

Damage at the vacant Prospect Elementary School has hit Memphis City Schools hard.

Denise Sharpe, director of comprehensive planning for MCS, says just about everything of value in the school on Hernando, near I-240 and Norris Road, was stolen or broken.

Toilets were broken and electrical panels and copper wire was stolen, according to Sharpe.

She believes the property has been hit by vandals several times since it was vacated in 2006.

The school board continued to use the facility as office space, but MCS has been trying to find a buyer for the property for more than a year and a half.

On Tuesday, the board voted to sell it to D Mae International Corp., which does business as Young Man University, for $210,000. The price was $1.14 million less than the $1.35 million building was appraised at in March 2011.

"There has been substantial damage resulting from vandals, actual vandalism, but that doesn't necessarily mean the building was devalued by $1 million," Sharpe said,

Meanwhile, she says MCS has taken the necessary steps to ensure the property remains protected.

Sharpe says Memphis City Schools has closed Lakeland, Georgia and Graceland Elementary Schools this year. MCS has found tenants for Lakeview and Georgia. Graceland will be demolished.

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