OWENSBORO, Ky. (WEHT) — At around 2 a.m. on Sept. 30, security footage at the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 696 revealed someone damaging their property.
On Monday, Owensboro Police made a traffic stop and a 16-year-old male was arrested. Officials say he was released to a guardian.
“He took our concrete flower pot and tossed it over first thing without hesitation,” said Joey Benningfield, the Commander of the facility.
Benningfield says the bar manager’s car was also broken into and will cost her nearly $500.
“He went over to the soldier. [The soldier] was bolted to the ground, and he pried it loose. [He] threw the soldier over and knocked its head off. Then, he picked up the head and went over to my bar manager’s vehicle and proceeded to smash her driver-side window out,” said Benningfield.
The commander says he hopes they can gather funds at the next meeting to cover the cost.
Authorities say a credit card and a City of Owensboro pick-up truck were also stolen.
“They were able to piece together that the juvenile male suspect that was charged in the burglary, and the theft of auto, was in fact the same suspect at the VFW. He was charged with criminal mischief mischief first degree,” said a spokesperson for the OPD.
The Commander of the Honor Guard says seeing the footage shocked him, and he hopes the person responsible can learn from the incident.
“If they had been in countries and seen people that us veterans have seen and what they live like, that gentleman would have never have done anything like that. He has no respect for people that actually are fighting to give him the freedom to live in such a good country,’ said Michael Velotta.
Officials say a new statue is in the works to be donated, and the flag will have to be replaced.
“In the war movies when you see the flag go down men pick it back up right away. No matter what and that makes them a target in combat and we do it with honor and pride,” said Benningfield.