THOMASVILLE -- Two Thomasville High School seniors described as good students are charged with manufacturing an explosive device they detonated on the school campus Monday morning.
"There was a big, loud bang," a police officer said about the resulting explosion. "This device, that's what it is designed to do."
Two 18-year-olds, Sean Gregory Howard, 310 Glenwood Drive, and Michael David Quinif, 106 Pony Circle, are charged with possession and manufacturing a destruction device, a felony, and misdemeanor simple assault.
The teens, who have been suspended, were released from the Thomas County Jail on bonds of $7,600 each.
Capt. Troy Rich, commander of the Thomasville Police Department Criminal Investigations Division, said Quinif and Howard skipped first-period classes Monday morning, purchased materials to make the explosive, returned to the campus and made the device.
The explosive device was placed in a school driveway near a building and detonated about 9:30 a.m., Rich said.
Howard and Quinif came forward and said they were responsible for the act, which they described as a senior prank, the officer explained.
Projectiles from the device were found within an 18-foot radius of the explosion site.
A school maintenance employee standing near the explosion site was transported to Archbold Memorial Hospital after complaining of ringing in his ears.
"He was back at work after a couple of hours," THS Principal Dr. Tom McCall said Tuesday.
The suspended students will go before a tribunal, McCall explained, citing a THS handbook ruling in such matters.
Howard and Quinif are "on track" for graduation, the principal said. Whether they graduate later this month will be up to the tribunal, McCall added.
"These two students are good students who made a bad choice," McCall said. What they did was serious, but their intent was to pull off a prank, he said.
"They just did not realize the severity of what they did," McCall explained.
Senior reporter Patti Dozier can be reached at (229) 226-2400, ext. 220.
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