The teens had been charged with burglary and criminal mischief, authorities said. Molinelli said his office will refer downgraded charges of criminal trespass and criminal mischief to the Teaneck Municipal Court.
The trials will likely not end in criminal convictions, he said.
The 39 students who were under 18 when they were arrested in connection with the senior prank will likely be eligible for a "station house adjustment," Molinelli said, in which the students will receive consequences like community service, but will not receive permanent marks on their juvenile records.
In his statement, Molinelli also commended the Teaneck Police officers, who have come under fire in the community for their response to the incident. Molinelli said locals should recognize the "restraint and admirable behavior" of the officers when responding to the school on May 1, where he said more than 100 students were running around dark hallways.
Molinelli also said the investigation into the incident is ongoing, as he said students obtained master keys to the building, which is how they got in for the prank. The school and law enforcement officials are looking into how the students got the keys, which he called a major security concern, especially as schools are now considered "soft targets" after recent school shootings across the country.
Molinelli's announcement comes after the Teaneck town council officially backed a group of
township parents in asking the prosecutor for leniency when
considering charges filed against the 63 Teaneck high schoolers accused of breaking
into and vandalizing the school as a senior prank, NorthJersey.com reported.
The council unanimously passed a resolution urging Molinelli to consider the incident a “youthful transgression,” the report said.