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HIGHLAND, Wash. -- Dozens of seniors pulled a senior prank inside Highland High School late Sunday night. They let chickens loose among other jokes.

A nearby Tieton police officer saw some of the students and thought they were vandals. The officer approached the students and even pulled his gun. Police say it's standard procedure.

The situation was eventually resolved. However, now the focus is on Highland school officials.

School Board Member DeDe Trepanier admits the students were given access to the building. She tells KIMA it was “absolutely” a mistake.

Trepanier says the senior prank is a harmless “tradition” that dates back to when she was a student.

She says this year, it got out of hand.

"It's unfortunate,” Trepanier said. “We're sorry that this happened and I think that everybody learned a good lesson."

Alexis Vineyard is one of the seniors. She said the students are now paying the price for something the district allowed to happen.

"We had the key from our principal and the codes to the alarm system and now we're getting in trouble for it,” Alexis said.

Alexis told KIMA she regrets that the police had to waste their time on the prank. Tieton police even called Yakima County deputies for back up.

Alexis’ mom says the police were doing their job.

"If this would have been an act of vandalism or people breaking into the school we would have wished they would have been there,” Danielle Vineyard said.

It’s not clear how many school officials were in on the prank. KIMA spoke with the Highland superintendent. He would not confirm exactly who gave the students access. He tells me the district is investigating all sides.

Trepanier said there won't be any more future senior pranks.
"We're not going to allow it to happen anymore,” she said.

The Highland senior class lost an overnight class trip and will do community service.

*Editor's note: After our story aired, the Highland School District contacted KIMA to confirm the high school principal did not give students access to the building. They say Trepanier is solely responsible for giving students access to the building.

Officer pulls gun at Highland High as 'senior prank' goes bad

School officials admit they let the students in the school.