Heather Carpenter, a 42-year-old substitute teacher at Phillippi Shores Elementary School, was arrested after she allegedly put human fecal matter on top of seven tables and two grills at Urfer Park in Sarasota, Florida, on December 1, 2018.
According to authorities, Sarasota police received a call from a witness around 6:30 a.m. on Saturday, December 1, to report that a woman in rubber gloves and a face mask was spreading feces on top of tables and grills at Urfer Park on Honore Avenue.
Police say that Carpenter was attempting to exact revenge on Phillippi Shores Elementary’s principal, who had reserved the park for her 6-year-old daughter’s birthday party. Deputies say that Carpenter said she filed a professional complaint at Phillippi Shores Elementary school and was not happy with how the principal handled it.
Carpenter was arrested by police on December 7 on suspicion of criminal mischief and was released the next day on $2,500 bond.
She has since been charged with third-degree felony criminal mischief and the park equipment had to be replaced, which cost Sarasota County $2,310.
The tables are porous and had to be replaced at a cost of $1,400. The grills, each of which cost $650, were replaced to ensure food safety. The labor for all of this cost $150 and because the pavilion was rented for the day, the money was refunded at a cost of $110. All told, the damage cost Sarasota County $2,310.
Detectives say the woman, the principal at Phillippi Shores Elementary, told them that she had invited all of the children in her child’s class to the birthday party. She also said she had an ongoing dispute with a substitute teacher, 42-year-old Heather Carpenter, over a complaint Carpenter had filed that Carpenter did not feel was being properly addressed. The principal explained that Carpenter was a substitute teacher and that Carpenter’s child was in her daughter’s class.
About a week later, detectives went to Carpenter’s residence. Police say she admitted putting the human fecal matter on the tables and grills to disrupt the birthday party because she was displeased with how the complaint was being handled.
In a statement, the Sarasota County School District said that Carpenter will not be able to serve as a substitute or volunteer at Sarasota schools following this incident.
Carpenter is not the only Florida teacher to make headlines in recent weeks, as Kingsford Elementary School teacher Tasha Fisher was arrested for allegedly driving under the influence on New Year’s Eve.