Police: Vandalism in Mechanicsburg parks on the rise

Mechanicsburg police say it’s an issue that affects tax dollars, recreation and quality of life. They’re asking the public to help them figure out who is responsible for an upswing in local park vandalism.

“We have 5-year-old, 10-year-old kids coming to use the park for summer rec programs on a daily basis,” Police Chief David Spotts said. “They get exposed to that. It’s just not the kind of thing we want here in Mechanicsburg.”

“Mechanicsburg is a very nice town and it’s nice to have the parks for grandchildren and family picnics and things like that,” Vicki Ringquist said.

Ringquist lives in Mechanicsburg and talked to abc27 while she was spending time in Koser Park.

“It’s just a shame kids are making those choices,” she said.

Police say they’ve been called out to 11 park vandalism cases this year. Seven happened within the last 35 days. They estimate a cost of $3,000 for the damage they’ve seen this year alone.

Police found cases of graffiti, but they say they are mostly dealing with destruction of property: BB guns used to shoot out doors and siding, vinyl ripped off walls, and even a water fountain torn from of a building.

“For every dollar we have to spend repairing damage, that’s one dollar less we have in the parks for summer programs or to make improvements to the parks,” Spotts said. “This isn’t harmless pranks here, this is real damage costing real money.”

Police are asking anyone who knows anything that could help them with these cases to call them at 717-238-9676.

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