Archive for Saturday, October 21, 2006

Teens accused of damage to historic cemetery

October 21, 2006


— Two teenagers have been charged with participating in the ransacking of a historic cemetery, leaving more than 300 grave markers damaged, including one for a former governor.

Terry Lee Danberry Jr. and Randy E. Norris, both 17, are accused of institutional vandalism.

Four juveniles, from 13 to 16 years of age, have been taken into custody.

The vandals are accused of climbing the fence of the more than 150-year-old Mount Mora Cemetery on Sept. 28 and tipping over headstones, crosses and obelisks. They also are accused of scattering funerary materials from tombs.

Among the monuments damaged was one to Silas Woodson, governor of Missouri from 1873 to 1875.

The damage totaled at least $30,000, but police said the number is expected to climb once estimates from more elaborate tombstones are completed.

Cemetery board members are in the process of filing an insurance claim.

"Sometimes it's just easier to destroy an antique," said Huston Wyeth, chairman of the cemetery board, who notes many newer cemeteries contain plaques instead of traditional headstones, which are easier to knock over.


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