San Francisco school officials are trying to figure out who hacked into a high school Web site, posted a student's face over vulgar and mocking images, then added racist and gang-related captions using the student's name.

Normally, the Washington High Web site features the usual school fare: club news, athletic schedules, student triumphs and information for parents.

But on Wednesday, school officials realized that someone had replaced all the school information with a set of photo montages apparently intended to humiliate a single student.

David Campos, the district's legal counsel, said the site was ordered shut down as soon as the invasion was discovered.

That didn't happen instantly. For hours, the mean-spirited images lingered on the site as frustrated administrators prepared to take legal steps against the company unless it cut off public access.

"If I have to stay here till midnight to get this shut down, I will," said Principal Andrew Ishibashi of Washington High.

Finally, at about 3 p.m., the site was closed down.

But questions remained, such has how the hacking happened, why it took so long to shut down the site, and how the software security breach might be patched.

The hacker used the breach to post the "N" word on the school's site, as well as gang references.

"Hacking into a computer is against the law. Everything else is freedom of speech," said an inspector with the San Francisco Police Department's Gang Task Force. "It doesn't sound like gang involvement. It sounds like one guy trying to make fun of another guy."

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