Massachusetts Cop Forum banner
1 - 20 of 21 Posts

·
Subscribing Member
Joined
·
3,274 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Worcester T&G

Friday, September 12, 2008

Hound is on vandals' trail

30 headstones were toppled in Gardner cemetery



Deputy Sheriff Shawn R. Conley of the Worcester County Sheriff Department's K-9 Division holds on to Blue, his 5-year-old bloodhound, as the dog picks up a scent at Crystal Lake Cemetery. (T&G Staff/PAUL KAPTEYN)

GARDNER- Blue, a Worcester County Sheriff's Department bloodhound, sniffed a sterile pad that had just been rubbed on a toppled gravestone yesterday afternoon, let out a loud, mournful yelp, and headed off through Crystal Lake Cemetery.

The dog and his handler, Deputy Sheriff Shawn R. Conley, were in the cemetery assisting Officer William Crockett, a Gardner police detective investigating the toppling of 30 gravestones in the cemetery Wednesday night or early yesterday morning. The 5-year-old dog then took the officers on a long trek through the cemetery and the neighborhood, stopping at several public buildings and private residences. By the time he was done, the dog had led police about two miles through the city into the center of town, as he worked to find the people responsible for the damage.

Municipal Grounds Director Mike Gonyeo said the cemetery was vandalized sometime between 6 p.m. Wednesday and 7 a.m. yesterday. The vandals appeared to have randomly knocked over stones along edges of roads in the cemetery.

"They stayed mostly to the roads," Mr. Gonyeo said, adding that most of the stones were just toppled, although a few were broken at their bases.

"It's mostly in the back of the cemetery," he said. The area called "The Seven Avenues" along the north side of the cemetery was the hardest hit. Stones up to four feet tall were toppled. Mr. Gonyeo said workers arriving at 7 a.m. yesterday noticed the toppled stones and called the police.

The city is offering a $500 reward for the arrest and conviction of the people responsible for the vandalism, but Mr. Gonyeo said the bigger problem is getting the stones repaired. "The problem is it is not up to the city to repair them," he said. "It's up to family members."

Adding to the problem, Mr. Gonyeo said, is that many of the graves are old.

"Up here, for many of the graves, there is no family left," he said. "A lot are in the 1800s."

Mr. Gonyeo said the city can- not even notify family members. There is no contact information.

The vandalized grave that police used to start the bloodhound track was a stone cross with the name "Mary" on it. It is between the graves of Lucy Sawin and Lucy Putnam Sawin.

Other damaged stones were those for Katherine Gleason, Hilda Frilander, Albin Sarkka, Artemas Upham, Samuel Lagerstrom, Paavo Wiihavainen, Arthur Soderlund, Herman Pafs and many others, including five markers of Stone family members. Some of the stones date back to the 1860s, when white limestone was used.

If the families are not found, it is not likely the stones will be set back upright. Several stones in the cemetery that were vandalized in the past have not been repaired. "They will need heavy machinery for about half of them to pick them upright," Mr. Gonyeo said.

He added that about 20 stones were vandalized in 2005, and more than 60 three years before that. In both cases the youths involved were caught and prosecuted. When the last vandalism occurred, he said, an anonymous donor gave the city $4,000 to make the repairs. A local businesswoman and two local organizations donated money for a reward.

Detective Crockett said that although the bloodhound did not lead police directly to suspects, it provided police leads on several places that will be further investigated.

Anyone with information on the vandalism is urged to call Gardner police at (978 632-5600. The identity of the caller will be kept confidential.
 

·
Retired Fed, Active Special
Joined
·
8,768 Posts


Deputy Sheriff Shawn R. Conley of the Worcester County Sheriff Department's K-9 Division holds on to Blue, his 5-year-old bloodhound, as the dog picks up a scent at Crystal Lake Cemetery.

Detective Crockett said that although the bloodhound did not lead police directly to suspects, it provided police leads on several places that will be further investigated.
HEE HEE!!!
I give up!
 

·
Working in the land of misfit toys
Joined
·
1,986 Posts
I am absolutely shocked that Gardner PD used the sheriffs. They have always called for MSP K-9 and if MSP was too far out they have used Westminsters.
 

·
Needs more complaints
Joined
·
4,309 Posts
Should read "Grave Stones Kicked Over" ...Period. But when I read this yesterday in the T&G I knew PBF Trooper would be stirring it up here :cool:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
779 Posts
I just started back to work today and couldnt wait to see what was said...lol.....and you boys fail to disappoint.....curious if the same reporters and photogs for these articles all the time.....bet they are honorary Deputies....lol

And as a side note....was talking to a guy who worked with Guy back at the jail when he was a temporary CO after daddy got him a job......said he was a asshat even back then......never on time.....out of shape with a uniform that looked like it was hit by a wrinkle bomb...brought school books and did school work before falling asleep in a dayroom religiously....
 

·
Grim reaper
Joined
·
1,361 Posts
Reader's Digest version; they didn't locate any suspects.

Why is this non-event newsworthy?
Because "Blue" is a cadaver dog and he located 425 suspects they just didnt know which one to exhume............so the deputy is filing criminal complaints against all of them.
:pinch:
 

·
Subscribing Member
Joined
·
583 Posts
"Although the Sheriff's bloodhound did not locate any suspects, he did alert on 85 prescription Tylenol pills in an old lady's purse. The Tylenol belong to 84 year old Annie Winters of Worcester. Mrs. Winters said that she takes them to alleviate minor aches and pains, but Sheriff's Department Spokesman Turco described the Tylenol seizure as one of the largest ever in Worcester County."
 

·
Subscribing Member
Joined
·
3,274 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
And as a side note....was talking to a guy who worked with Guy back at the jail when he was a temporary CO after daddy got him a job......said he was a asshat even back then......never on time.....out of shape with a uniform that looked like it was hit by a wrinkle bomb...brought school books and did school work before falling asleep in a dayroom religiously....
Once an asshat, always an asshat
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,509 Posts
What a bunch of assholes to knock over the graves. I would like to knock them over and then see how it feels. That's just f'ing wrong to do that shit nomatter what kind of a dirtbag you are!
 

·
Needs more complaints
Joined
·
4,309 Posts
Anyone want to bet that he was not invited and was just jumping a call.
I doubt it. GPD likes to invite them and their EM-50 Urban Assault Command Post to their large July 4th celebration at the college. MSP does traffic, and GPD does the interior.

Again, we were wondering why does this thing need to be here (with Sgts and above manning it, on OT of course)? We could've called CHQ and asked for LPS 1 for everyone to use. A command post was there, but the event takes in several thousand and we had no transport van for prisoners...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
779 Posts
We should just cut them out of everything and see if DOC could transport in events like that to the barracks or PD levels....they did it for us at the DNC...I'd rather give them the money..
 
1 - 20 of 21 Posts
Top