CARMEL, Ind. – Vandals shattered mirrors, ripped sinks from bathroom walls and scratched graffiti into playground equipment.
“It was incredibly bold and really just unfortunate,” said Michael Klitzing with Carmel Clay Parks.
Early Tuesday morning, a worker discovered the vandalism at Central Park West Commons. The park is one of Carmel’s newest.
“It’s certainly our most popular playground in Carmel,” said Klitzing.
Most of the damage was done in both bathrooms. There’s now caution tape where a sink once was and an empty wall where there used to be mirrors.
“It’s just senseless and mindless. Unfortunately, all it does is hurt kids really. It impacts their ability to enjoy and feel comfortable coming to the parks, that’s sad and not what we’re about,” said Klitzing.
This park is just the most recent vandalized Carmel Clay park. In the past two weeks, officials reported damage at three different parks.
“We’ve had a restroom fire in West Park that was set by a vandal. Fortunately, the juvenile was caught and has been apprehended. We had a playground in River Heritage Park that was designed specifically for wheelchairs and that was damaged to the point where it’s no longer safe,” said Klitzing.
Park officials don’t think the same people hit all three parks. The damage at Central Park West Commons was the most widespread. The repair bill will be at least $5,000.
“It’s dollars that could be spent on much more productive things that’s what’s really sad,” said Klitzing.
Crews quickly cleaned-up and fix what they could so families could still use the park and the restrooms.
“I just hope that it doesn’t reoccur and I’m not entirely sure how you prevent it,” said Trisha Garrity, a park goer.
Officials are in the process of installing security cameras at all the Carmel Clay parks.
“Just be respectful. There are more constructive ways if you’re upset about something. If you have free time, find something more productive to do,” said Klitzing.
Police are investigating this case and have stepped up patrols in the area.