The police turned a parking prank at Braintree High School into a fund-raising drive for victims of Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma, using cheeky posts on Facebook that drew 1.5 million views and more than 4,000 comments.
The Sept. 8 prank involved 65 Braintree High seniors parking their vehicles horizontally across parking lines, taking up several spaces in what the police dubbed a “parking lot turf war” designed to put juniors in their place.
All 65 seniors received $15 tickets — as a lesson from the “Po Po,” the police explained on Facebook. “Those are not free ice cream cones to Daddy’s Dairy. Thank you for raising $975 for the town,” the post said, ending with a meme of a microphone dropping.
After the post went viral, the police came back with a new offer. They would void the ticket of any student that made a $15 donation to the Houston Food Bank or American Red Cross Disaster Relief to help hurricane victims.
Students who had already paid the fine were given an “Internet fist bump for being so quick,” and urged to donate anyway because “it will make you feel good.”
The police also challenged all other seniors and juniors to donate as a student body.
“We know you can do it, heck a Gofundme was started for the tickets within an hour of our original post,” the post said.
“Believe it or not, it was never about the revenue,” the post continued. “It was a lesson in life. We hope the lesson was learned, and feel the money is better off going towards relief for people who’ve lost everything in these hurricanes. Sincerely: The Po Po.”Johanna Seltz can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.