Grave site thefts a problem for cemeteries in the areaFargo-Moorhead (WDAY TV) - Over the next few days, thousands of families around the area will head out to cemeteries in the region, to plant flowers and honor the memory of loved ones.
By: Kevin Wallevand, WDAY
Over the next few days, thousands of families around the area will head out to cemeteries in the region, to plant flowers and honor the memory of loved ones. In some cases, people may find things missing. In the Twin Cities, police are asking the public's help after someone stole more than 100 copper vases from a cemetery in Crystal.
Hard to believe anyone would target a cemetery, but families do report thefts at all local cemeteries; from flowers to solar lights, to copper vases.
Daryll Rued came to plant geraniums today in memory of his wife Shirley, who passed away in 2010. He and many other families are out this week, cleaning away winter wear, dead grass and getting grave sites ready for the Memorial Day traffic. When Darryl found out thieves actually target cemeteries for copper vases attached to grave stones, he could not believe it.
Daryll Rued – West Fargo: “You have those few who don't seem to care about the hallowed grounds they are stealing from.”
At Riverside Cemetery, a list of missing or stolen items is kept.
Tom Shafer – Riverside Cemetery: “Don't put anything that is of great value, a family heirloom or something like that, because you don't want to lose that.”
Fargo Police do patrol the cemetery as a way to send a message to thieves to stay away.
Tom Shafer: “I can't think of anything lower than stealing something from a grave, but we have it happen. Sometimes they take plastic flowers, and what is it, a dollar or two at the most?”
If a cemetery does notice a lot of copper vases are missing, they tell the police. The police in turn tell the local junk yard so they can keep a look out for them. Those bronze vases are expensive. Replacing them can cost families $200 each.