Vandals Destroy Century-Old Tombstones In Northwest Arkansas

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WASHINGTON COUNTY (KFSM) - Thirty-nine tombstones were vandalized at Beaty Cemetery in Lincoln. Now, investigators are looking for those responsible.

Between July 10 and July 22,  more than one person vandalized the cemetery, said Lt. Bret Hagan with the Washington County Criminal Investigators.

Out of the 39 headstones vandalized, some were destroyed, and some just damaged.

Beer cans and Gatorade bottles were found at the cemetery, and a scooter safety manual was found as well.

"Some of that evidence we are hopeful we can at least get some latent prints off of for comparison when we do develop a suspect," said Lt. Hagan.

The suspects responsible could be facing up to 15 years in prison, with a multitude of fines.

"This is a place where loved ones are buried, a place to rest, and for someone, or individuals, to come into that cemetery and destroy those is pretty heartbreaking to the families," said Hagan.

Some of the tombstones at the cemetery date back centuries.

''We don't know how old the oldest tombstone is, we can tell you some of the stone in there is really expensive to replace. Some of the stonework is not available locally to replace,'' Lt. Hagan said.

If you have any information to help solve this case, call Northwest Arkansas Crimestoppers at (479) 790-TIPS.

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