I think I'll take my chances with the judge if this were me:
Defaced Esquimalt cenotaph outrages veterans. Teen charged should have to face vets, says legion official
Rob Shaw, Times Colonist Published: Tuesday, July 08, 2008
A teenager caught spray-painting a war memorial in Esquimalt should have to face the community's war veterans and explain himself, says the president of the local branch of the Royal Canadian Legion.
Victoria police arrested a 14-year-old boy late Sunday for painting symbols all over the cenotaph at Memorial Park.
The granite cenotaph, originally unveiled in 1927, honours veterans of past wars and recent Canadian peacekeepers. Its historic plaques are engraved with such phrases that include "In memory of Esquimalt's war dead," and, "To the memory of those residents of Esquimalt who laid down their lives in the service of the Empire during the Great War of 1914-1918."
The graffiti vandal partially covered a good part of the memorial structure with yellow and green spray paint. He also tagged a nearby cannon.
"I think it's despicable, it is beyond belief, really," said Ken Irvine, president of Esquimalt branch Local 172. "Someone like that, he should be made to face all the veterans to [understand] the enormity of what he's done."
Victoria police went to the park around 10:18 p.m. Sunday after receiving a call about a group of youths, said Const. Derek Tolmie. Officers arrested the 14-year-old boy and released him on a promise to appear in court for a charge of mischief. "It looks like a stupid act by teenagers," said Tolmie.
Esquimalt municipal workers and volunteers spent part of the afternoon cleaning the cenotaph. "It's sacrilege, total sacrilege," said Michael Reed, Esquimalt's facilities operations supervisor, as he scrubbed the granite with a rag. "Six or seven times a year this probably gets hit... but this is the worst I've seen it in awhile."
Esquimalt has covered some of its historical sites, such as the war memorial, with a special resin coating to prevent spray paint from permanently damaging the surfaces. Nonetheless, the municipality had to call in a specialist company to thoroughly clean the cenotaph's many grooves and brass plaques.
Esquimalt has a yearly budget of $20,000 for removing graffiti, including grant money from B.C. Hydro, said Reed. Even so, much of the cleanup work is done by a group of volunteers called E-Tag, co-ordinated by Peter Justo. "I'd like to know what motivates them," Justo, 71, said of graffiti vandals. "There must be other worthwhile things to do."
Victoria police said they are working on a graffiti database to help match future suspects with their tags.
Police said they'll consider whether the teenager charged with vandalizing the cenotaph would benefit from participating in restorative justice programs rather than court penalties.
If so, the legion would like to talk to him, said Irvine. "I think you'd have to explain why the cenotaph was there and the reasons we have our memorial," said Irvine. "A lot of people died so that kid could carry on and do what he wants to do."
© Times Colonist (Victoria) 2008
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07-08-2008, 12:24 PM #1
- Join Date
- Mar 2002
- Loco madidus effercio in rutilus effercio.
Face Judicial Proceedings Or The Veterans?
07-08-2008, 05:15 PM #2
That's just plain messed up. Kids today don't seem to respect anything anymore.
07-08-2008, 08:53 PM #3
I say let the little ****** go in front of the Vets. Allow them to explain to the guys who fought along side some of those names on that memorial and gave these ****s the freedom they have today. Maybe we could even allow them to go in a room with a few combat arms soldiers from todays Military. I'm sure they would fix these two up quite well. Something similar happened in Barrie Ontario last year as well.
I'll admit I'm not very old, but I know that when I was 14 I had more respect for others than any of the little punks roaming around today. It's just unreal.If someone with multiple personalities threatens to kill himself, is it considered a hostage situation?
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