STAFFORD COUNTY, Va. — There is a new trend going around on the social media site, TikTok, where kids damage or steal property and post it online.
It's called the 'Devious Licks' challenge.
CBS reports the viral challenge inspires students to try to steal their way to online fame. A common item being taken appears to be soap dispensers from public restrooms.
The trend has received so much attention that several local school principals have responded by sending out letters for parents to talk with their kids about the challenge.
Last week, a North Stafford High School student was charged with allegedly vandalizing a park bathroom, as part of this trend.
The Stafford County Sheriff's Office said the students took the soap dispensers from the bathrooms at North Stafford High School Friday. The teens were identified and now face school disciplinary and criminal charges.
Just a few hours later, the sheriff's office said six students snuck off Stafford High School's campus during lunch to Chichester Park. A deputy and school resource officer spotted the group after one of the teens allegedly ripped soap dispensers from the wall of the park bathroom and damaged a bathroom door. While only one teen from the group will face criminal charges, all six students are facing punishment for having left school grounds.
A spokesperson for Stafford County Public Schools said in a statement "SCPS is aware of the trend and we are addressing any instances of vandalism first with parents and the School Resource Officers, and when necessary, through the Code of Conduct."
The sheriff's office asks parents to talk with their children about the ramifications of participating in the viral trend.
"We encourage parents to talk to their teens about social media and the seriousness of vandalism to school property," said the sheriff's office in a Facebook post.
The trend continues to cause headaches for school administrators around the nation and in the DMV.
In Fairfax County, the principal of Falls Church High School sent home a letter asking parents to talk with their children about the viral meme and help make sure students don't participate in this behavior.
"Parents & Guardians:
I would like to ask that you take some time to talk with your children about a viral meme on TikTok that has found its way onto school campuses nationwide. The meme calls for students to vandalize schools in several ways and promotes these ideas under the tag, "Devious Licks."
We have seen some of this at FCHS recently and ask for your support in helping make sure our students are not engaging in this unacceptable behavior," said Ben Nowak, the Principal of Falls Church High School.
The social media site TikTok is now responding to the challenge. If you try and search the hashtag, it takes you to a different screen with a warning saying TikTok has removed all content related to this challenge.
CBS is reporting that TikTok has banned "Devious Licks" videos, claiming the trend violates the app's community guidelines.