Rodda updates council on vandals

‘Excessive’ spree nets few arrests, little restitution for hard-hit parks


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John Rodda, who grew up in Eagle River and now runs the Anchorage Parks Department, said he’s never seen vandalism as bad as this summer’s spree.

“It’s excessive,” Rodda told a meeting of the Eagle River community council on Oct. 13 in Eagle River.

Rodda said area vandalism — which began in the spring and has continued at a record pace — has cost the municipality in excess of $20,000 in materials alone. He said that figure is much higher when personnel hours are taken into account.

Rodda said one small group of individuals was apprehended by Anchorage Police at Mirror Lake, but the city was only able to get about $1,500 in restitution.

“Mostly young kids don’t have anything anyway,” Rodda said.

Vandals this year have hit just about every park in the area, he said. Destruction of city property has ranged from the tearing up of grass to breaking locks to stealing decorative brass animals off fences.

“It’s the worst I’ve seen it out here,” Rodda said.

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