If you’re thinking this story is about a smoker who did something with a cigarette butt that caused a HUGE amount of damage, you would be right. Per The Star-Ledger (via nj.com):
Middlesex County acting Prosecutor Andrew C. Carey said investigators believe that [school custodian] Jerome C. Higgins, 48, of East Brunswick, tossed an unfinished portion of a cigarette into a trash can inside the school before he left the building sometime Saturday.
Carey said the contents of the trash can, located in a custodian’s office, caught fire and the blaze spread throughout the building at about 7:45 p.m.
The result was an inferno that consumed the 50-year-old building that held 450 students in kindergarten through fifth grade.
Poof. Just like that, the building was gone. There must be some serious consequences for that, right? Well …
Higgins is charged with a petty disorderly persons offense for smoking inside the school.
Well, it’s not like anyone will be inconvenienced or anything …
[Edison Board of Education President Gene] Maeroff said the school’s students and staff will not return to school until Wednesday when they will be placed in temporary quarters at Middlesex County College in Edison until more permanent facilities can be found.
All of the children will have to be bused to the college, which is several miles away from the school.
“We’re doing this so they will all stay together,” the board president said. “After a few weeks, they will go to more permanent facility once we find one.”
Um. Sorry? Click here for the source, some photos, a video, and some additional information on this unfortunate event.