Portland Prom Prank Probed

Letter urged parents to provide alcohol at 'safe' house parties

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Portland Prom Prank Probed

APRIL 24--Oregon educators want law enforcement officials to probe who was responsible for mailing parents a letter on school letterhead suggesting that they supply students with alcohol at post-prom parties. The letter, a copy of which you'll find here, was sent this week to families of students at Portland's Lincoln High School.

Recipients of the missive were urged to consider opening their homes this Saturday for parties as "a safe, secure place for students to have fun," adding if adults 'provide the alcohol, you can have peace of mind knowing that they did not acquire it illegally. Condoms were included with the letters--which were written on Portland Public Schools stationery--since "STD epidemics have spread through other high school communities and we want to prevent such an outbreak as best we can."

The letter was purportedly written by "The Lincoln High School Faculty and Administration." Officials do not know how the letter's creator(s) got access to school mailing lists.

And while rather well written, the letter did include obvious clues that it was a hoax, including a supposed recommendation from the Oregon Liquor Control Commission. The state agency, the letter claimed, "stated that a fifth of alcohol, like Hennessy Cognac, is sufficient supply for at least 8 adults. One can assume that for 17 to 18 year old individuals, one fifth can probably be spread out to 4 students. Considering our reputation (Drinkin' Lincoln), in some cases one fifth is only enough for a single person." (2 pages)