A Rhode Island high school assistant principal sent an email to solicit donations from staff to pay a student’s “coyote” fees for coming to America, according to a copy of the email obtained by the Daily Caller News Foundation.
Providence’s Mount Pleasant High School Assistant Principal Stefani Harvey sent an email Thursday night soliciting donations for “a student who came to America with ‘Coyote,’ which is a group that helps people,” according to the message. The email described the coyote as a group that “gives you a time frame to make a payment of $5000 dollars to those, who bring them into the states.”
Harvey didn’t respond to a request for comment. However, a spokesperson for the school denied the validity of the email in a phone conversation with the DCNF. (RELATED: Over 50 Unaccompanied Migrant Kids Discovered In Truck)
“That is a fake email. We are on top of that. We are trying to figure out who generated that and why. We do not have a student that is being human trafficked,” the school official, who did not identify themselves, told the DCNF.
Providence Teachers Union President Maribeth Calabro told local radio host Matt Allen Friday that the email, which she first heard about from the radio anchor and then confirmed with teachers at Mount Pleasant High School, was real and that the school was conducting an internal investigation.
“I was a little taken aback by the content,” Calabro said, “I engaged the district, I called leadership in the district and I said ‘hi folks, what’s going on here’ and they were aware and they said that when they were made aware they went into immediate investigatory mode and that once the investigation was concluded that there would be correspondence.”
“Some folks, and that’s why some folks didn’t reach out to me last night when they got it, or earlier this morning when they got it was because they thought it was one of those, like, ‘you have won $5,000, all you have to do is text us your Social Security number’ kind of things. But in conversations with each other and during the school morning, you know, in arrival time, they realized quite quickly that it was not in fact a hack or a misrepresentation or a joke and so that’s when folks started to become concerned,” Calabro said, adding that she “reached out to some folks at the school and they confirmed that it was in fact an email sent by the assistant principal.”
Coyotes are smugglers who take advantage of migrants trying to cross the border into the U.S., according to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
“Smugglers use lies to lure the vulnerable into a dangerous journey that often ends in removal or death,” then U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Commissioner Chris Magnus said of an agency effort to counter coyotes in May.
The school’s principal, Tiffany Delaney, sent a subsequent email Friday to staff clarifying the school’s position on the earlier request.
“I appreciate the faculty and staff contributing to a cause that supports a student, but the nature of the request is not appropriate. All funds contributed will be returned and we will seek more appropriate methods to support our students,” Delaney said in the email.
All content created by the Daily Caller News Foundation, an independent and nonpartisan newswire service, is available without charge to any legitimate news publisher that can provide a large audience. All republished articles must include our logo, our reporter’s byline and their DCNF affiliation. For any questions about our guidelines or partnering with us, please contact email@example.com.