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Archive for Friday, July 15, 2011

Three suspects arrested in connection with extensive vandalism at Eudora school stadium

July 15, 2011

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Douglas County prosecutors confirmed Friday morning that Eudora police have arrested three people in connection with the recent vandalism that damaged the new Eudora District Stadium.

District Attorney Charles Branson said one adult suspect, an 18-year-old Eudora man, posted bond and was released from jail Thursday night and two other juvenile suspects were arrested and later released from custody.

“We are awaiting additional information from the Eudora Police Department before charges are filed,” Branson said.

Eudora police said earlier this week they were investigating vandalism at the stadium that opened last fall on the Eudora High School campus, 2203 Church St. Voters approved a 2007 bond issue to fund the nearly $2 million stadium.

Police and school officials said suspects late last week spray painted the Cardinal mascot head on the new field’s artificial surface and a portion of the track, causing at least $25,000 in damage.

According to Douglas County Jail records, an 18-year-old Eudora man was arrested at the Eudora Police Department on suspicion of criminal damage to property greater than $25,000. He posted $2,500 bond through a bondsman and was given notice to appear in court July 28. Prosecutors could file formal charges before then.

The Journal-World generally does not name suspects unless they are formally charged.

Eudora police Friday morning said supervisors authorized to speak about the investigation would not be available Friday, and Kristin Magette, a Eudora schools spokeswoman, said the district and police department were planning a joint news release for Monday.

Once the damage was reported last week, Eudora school district closed the stadium, pending repairs and additional security measures.

Magette said Superintendent Don Grosdidier told school board members Thursday evening that the district has received a preliminary estimate of $130,000 from a contractor for the repairs to the turf and track. The estimate included a full resealing of the track — not just the portion that was damaged — for appearance of uniformity, she said.

“Those are really preliminary estimates,” Magette said. “At this point they’re exploring a lot of options.”

She said the district does have insurance, so likely not all costs would be an out-of-pocket expense. District officials have said they expect to seek damages from anyone prosecuted for the vandalism.

Grosdidier also told board members Thursday the district planned to use the stadium this fall for football and soccer games, even if that means coming up with a short-term solution, Magette said.

“It demonstrates in my mind the magnitude of what’s been done,” she said. “It quantifies exactly how extreme of a situation that we’re in. This isn’t something that you simply buy paint for or buff it out. This is significant.”

Comments

rockchalker52 3 years, 6 months ago

By the time these guys have completed restitution, they'll be too old & feeble to do it again - so at least we have that going for us.

Shane Garrett 3 years, 6 months ago

The results of a decision today may effect ones entire life. The first question I try to teach young ones is to ask themselves if some one could get hurt by this decision or action.

08Champs 3 years, 6 months ago

This is so sad. The 18 year old that was arrested would be one of the last kids anyone would have suspected. Stupid and sad.

grimpeur 3 years, 6 months ago

So now the facility is, what...broken? Ugly? Unusable? $130,000 seems like the maximum you could possibly spend if you really tried or if you needed to dig up the field/track to make wholesale replacements of portions of either.

Of course, there is no need to do that. Surely someone has investigated the cost of simply repainting the field or cleaning up the paint, and making the vandals do it. Soon. Before we have no more 100-degree days.

Open the field up, let 'em play and practice football and soccer and run track on it. Paint'll be gone before long. Put a plaque up that calls out the vandals as a way of explaining. A little public humiliation ought to teach 'em and provide a deterrent to like-minded halfwits.

concernedeudoravoter 3 years, 6 months ago

You can't simply repaint over the damage. The Cardinal head at the center of the field is not painted onto the turf. It was custom made by the company that installed the field using specific colors of turf fibers that are stitched together. Officials have tried using chemicals to clean or remove the paint the caused to damage and it will not come off. So you can not simply cover it up.

docancan 3 years, 6 months ago

love this idea! it's how things used to be handled. it's also why young men used to grow up to be decent individuals.

08Champs 3 years, 6 months ago

The costs do seem high - but they include resealing the entire track as the article indicates, not just patching the area that was damaged. Part of the justification for the stadium being constructed was to include a regulation track so that regionals could be held there I think. If it's patched after only a year, that would be less than ideal. I agree that an example could be made, and of course restitution. Knowing the 18 year old involved, it will be a shock to the community, and a good teaching moment for families. The district indicated they will continue to use the facility, but some of the spray painting included pretty obscene images. I'm sure they need to get that addressed before the school year starts.

O2You 3 years, 6 months ago

oletimer- I do not agree with you one bit, Your saying you have never done anything harmful, or stupid? I dont believe that. Everyone, and I mean EVERYONE, makes mistakes in their life time some sooner than others. You live and you learn. I can tell you this being the sibling of these people (which I am) we never expected this at all. This was their first screw up, and it just had to be a biggy, 130,000 biggy. But they are the best kids you have ever seen I can garntee that. Just to throw in something else to make your harsh words make you feel stupid, they are young sure they knew better but they honesty thought it was harmless and that it could simply be cleaned up the next day easily.

08Champs 3 years, 6 months ago

Oletimer - you are blaming someone else, (the parents). Can't have it both ways. These kids were not from broken homes with uncaring, absent parents. They made an INCREDIBLY bad decision and will have to face the consequences. It's easy to shake your head (me too) when you read about the juvenile delinquent activity and know the family situation may have contributed, but this one's a stunner I assure you.

angel4dennis 3 years, 6 months ago

They should be held accountable for their decision. This is NOT their property and they took it upon themselves to vandalize it. I have no sympathy for them whether they came from a great home life or not. They were probably taught right from wrong at an early age! Seriously need to make the punishment fit the crime. The school and its insurance will enjoy coming up with the money to repair the property. Besides restitution and some county jail time, I think they should serve community service as well. Maybe go on a speaking circuit to other high schools and tell their story. If it don't belong to you, KEEP YOUR HANDS OFF!

08Champs 3 years, 6 months ago

I don't see anyone here defending the students. It will be interesting to see what is decided for punishment.

Kookamooka 3 years, 6 months ago

If it's so easy for them all to post bond, they should be able to pay for the damages. I heard it could be 130,000. Kids need to learn to not destroy things. It isn't funny.

weeslicket 3 years, 6 months ago

that case didn't take long to solve, now did it? pay attention kiddies. stupid decisions don't stay secret for long.

jayhawkgirlbear 3 years, 6 months ago

As a parent of a Eudora High Athlete, I am beyond upset. The "good kids" are being punished by not being allowed to use the track or field for training without a Staff member being present. The track has been on lock down so no one from the community (who paid for the bond to build the stadium) can use the track to exercise as well. Many may say "just use the old one," but they are missing the point.

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