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Vandals damage Ngaruawahia cemetery

Waikato District Council and the Police have condemned shameful acts of vandalism carried out at a Ngaruawahia cemetery.

Cars have ripped up the turf at Jackson St Cemetery after drivers have raced around the cemetery on at least three occasions since 19 June.

A neighbouring resident has reported hoons to the police and the Council has already spent $1,600 of ratepayer money to reinstate turf.

The latest incident happened last week.

“The offenders clearly have no respect, and to do this sort of thing in the grounds of a cemetery is disgusting,” said Waikato District Council Parks and Facilities Manager Amanda Hampton.

“They could have easily broken or destroyed headstones and this type of behaviour is just not acceptable.”

A description of cars involved has been given to the Ngaruawahia Police.

“We find the actions of the drivers of the vehicles disrespectful to the families’ of the deceased and the local community,” said Sergeant Neil Mouncher.

“And if police apprehend any driver causing such damage in the future they will be charged accordingly, with either a charge of wilful damage which carries a $2000 fine or three months imprisonment, or a traffic infringement notice with an instant $600 fine.”

Waikato District Council staff are grateful for the reports of vandalism that have come in from cemetery neighbours and encourage all members of the public to let Council or the police know if they see any similar incidents at cemeteries throughout the district.

PHOTO CAPTION: Turf has been damaged close to headstones in Jackson St Cemetery in Ngaruawahia.

For more information please contact:
John Brown
Senior Communications Advisor
Waikato District Council
07 824 8633