Park Vandalism

City of Mattoon Asks for help fighting vandalism in City Parks

The City of Mattoon needs help fighting vandalism in its City parks.  Recently, staff spent extra time and money to remove graffiti, replace mulch and clean up park benches. The next night, graffiti was back, obscenities were carved into the picnic tables and a few weeks ago, someone set fire to the new mulch. The City has replaced the rings on an overhead piece of playground equipment in Lawson Park 3 times.

City Administrator Sue McLaughlin says, "It’s very unfortunate that some individuals choose to destroy equipment that is meant for the enjoyment of the community. We need residents to assist the police department and parks department in reducing these crimes."

Parks hit recently include Lawson Park, Vanlaningham Park and Peterson Park.  The police department has beefed up patrols in the area, but cannot always catch offenders. Homeowners surrounding those parks and in those areas should contact the police department whenever they see criminal activity or suspicious behavior. The costs attributed to some of these crimes can reach the thousands depending on the frequency and amount of damage.