Florence police searching for vandal who damaged green space at park

Florence park vandalized.

FLORENCE, MS (WLBT) - Mischief in Florence has police on the hunt for vandals who targeted a park on Church Street.

The brazen prank has social media abuzz in the town.

According to investigators, after Hemphill Park closed between late Monday and early Tuesday, someone drove in and did donuts, damaging a green space.

Florence Police believe vandals damaged grounds after Hemphill Park closed Monday. Source: WLBT
Florence Police believe vandals damaged grounds after Hemphill Park closed Monday. Source: WLBT

Florence police say Facebook posts are leading to the culprits.

"We actually picked up some information, and that's the way we got it by people looking on Facebook," said Chief Richard Thomas.

He posted pictures of the churned earth on the town’s Facebook page and is offering a $100 reward for information leading to an arrest and conviction.

“They had gone in there in a pickup truck or a car or something a vehicle and done donuts in the grass,” said Thomas. “Not just once around. It was several times around because it dug down pretty deep.”

Early estimates for repairs are $300 to $500.

“I actually am very surprised,” said Brianna McAlpine.

The Wesson resident often brings her two-year-old to the park.

She believes it’s a prank which should not come with severe punishment.

"It's probably just kids being a little wild, but I do think it would be a good idea for them to do maybe some community service or cleaning up the park," said McAlpine.

Many Facebook posts agree that the misdemeanor crime deserves punishment of giving back to the park and the city without receiving a police record.

“We do have leads on it,” added Chief Thomas. “I don’t want to give names or anything like that. We’re looking into information that people have forwarded to us.”

Police are getting assistance from social media on culprits. Source: WLBT
Police are getting assistance from social media on culprits. Source: WLBT

No soccer or baseball fields were vandalized.

Call the Florence Police Department at 601-845-7508 if you have any information.

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