A ladybug senior prank seemed like a good idea for a group of students in St. Mary's County. However, it cost a Chopticon High School student his chance to walk with his classmates at graduation.
Every effort was made to get senior student Brian Reminga to attend his graduation. A 28-year veteran teacher at his high school wrote a letter to the superintendent, hundreds signed a petition and there was even a student protest before the school.
But Chopticon's principal had the last word and there would be no eleventh hour mercy for him.
Reminga's eyes welled up with tears when he told us that his family was coming from California to see him graduate. He made a plea before school officials 24 hours out from graduation after he and six other alleged pranksters got caught last week as they released 72,000 lady bugs in the school's hallways as part of a senior prank.
On Wednesday evening inside St. Mary's College of Maryland's gymnasium, Reminga's name was front and center in the graduation program, but he was nowhere to be found among Chopticon High School's Class of 2015.
"That is quite a bit of lady bugs," said Tyisha Smith, who attended the school's graduation. "I still think of them as something harmless. They didn't damage any property, didn't hurt anyone's feelings or hurt anyone."
For many, the punishment didn't fit the crime, especially considering the five other alleged pranksters graduating were allowed to walk.
So why was Reminga the only one singled out? School officials still remain quiet on that. Despite having sent several emails to Chopticon's principal, we have still not heard back.
As for Reminga, he did not get to walk, but he did graduate and says he is now headed to the Naval Academy.