Cemetery Vandalism - A Senseless Crime
The City of Boise’s cemeteries are full of history, architecture styles, and community heritage. They are sanctuaries for the living and, for so many people, that land is sacred. This is why toppled tombstones are disturbing and devastating to the cemetery, cemetery staff, the families, and the community.
When toppling occurs, cemetery staff is there to up-right the stones. It is important ensure that this happens quickly. The Parks and Recreation Department knows if vandalism is left, it will breed more vandalism. The Department will also try to contact families, if possible, and ask them to consider having their own monument company repair the markers that have been damaged.
To curb or prevent vandalism within the cemeteries, Boise Parks and Recreation has taken a proactive approach. Staff work with various individuals and neighborhood groups, security professionals, the media and Boise Police Crime Prevention Unit, to educate and fight this crime. Additional approaches such as installing security lighting, locking gates at dusk, having random security patrols, and removing plantings and tree branches to increase sight lines, have been implemented. There have been times when the Department may offer a reward for information leading to an arrest of, and charges filed against, those responsible for the cemetery vandalism.
Most importantly, we ask our neighbors and the community to assist us in keeping an eye on our cemeteries. If suspicious behavior is observed, please call Boise City Police Dispatch at (208) 377-6790.