It may seem exciting to take a truck off-road in an open field in the park after dark, or to carve the initials of BAE along a boardwalk railing, but both actions are vandalism – and vandalism is a crime.
“If someone damages public property, we will prosecute to the fullest extent of the law,” said Derek Honeycutt, Director of General Services.
Earlier this year, there were several instances of graffiti on Collierville school buildings. The perpetrators were caught by the Collierville Police, charged with five counts of vandalism, and now going through the juvenile court process.
Vandalism can be a costly problem for the Town, essentially hurting Collierville taxpayers. Pictured are examples of common vandalism problems in Town – ruts from a vehicle on park property (above) and graffiti on signage (below) – cleaning and correcting these offenses costs around $100-$200 each. Over the course of a year, the Town spends an average of $5,000 fixing damaged public property from vandalism.
In addition to the monetary costs associated with vandalism, the acts affect the quality of life for the community. People feel angry, sad, and frightened when something is purposely damaged. Vandalism can also indirectly claim other victims; for example, if a stop sign is covered or missing, it could possibly cause a traffic accident.
“Vigilance is important to help deter vandalism,” said Derek. “When visiting a park, see who is hanging around and keep an eye out for suspicious activity.”
Collierville Police strongly encourage residents to report anything they see that simply "does not feel right" by calling the CPD non-emergency number: 901-853-3207. (The CPD also encourages residents to save the non-emergency number in their contact lists to make it even easier to call.)