School & District Management

High School Hackers Arrested for Changing Grades

By Kyle Hansen, Las Vegas Sun (MCT) — March 04, 2011 1 min read
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Authorities in Pahrump arrested 13 people as part of an investigation into students hacking into a school computer system to change class grades.

The Nye County Sheriff’s Office said Tyler Coyner, 19, allegedly gained unauthorized access to a password for the Nye County School District’s computer system.

Coyner then allegedly solicited student customers to pay him to change grades in the system, officials said. Authorities believe Coyner changed grades for 12 students over the course of two semesters.

The sheriff’s office also said Coyner changed his own grades so he could be recognized as the Pahrump Valley High School salutatorian.

Coyner, Matthew Miller and Nicholas Ramoser, all 19 years old, were arrested along with 10 juveniles, whose names haven’t been released. The 13 face charges of altering computer data, conspiracy to commit a crime, burglary and grand larceny.

The juveniles were turned over to Nye County Juvenile Probation. Coyner, Miller and Ramoser were booked into the Nye County Detention Center. Coyner and Miller were released on their own recognizance and Ramoser posted bail.

The investigation into the grade-changing charges also led to charges that Coyner, Miller and one of the arrested juveniles broke into a Pahrump Walmart and stole a flat-screen television to take with them to college.

Nye County officials worked with the UNR Police Department to search Coyner and Miller’s dorm room, where the stolen television was recovered, officials said. During the dorm room search, authorities also found several fake identification cards.

School district officials are trying to correct grades that had been changed. Once that is complete, the district will notify colleges about students who were accepted with incorrect grades.

Detectives said the investigation is ongoing and there might be other students who were involved in the grade changing or had knowledge of the alleged crime.

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