Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Grave rampage

At least $10,000 of damage was caused by vandals at the Benalla Cemetery over the weekend, including "shocking" damage in the children's section.

ANGELA TOWNSEND January 23, 2013 4:59am

Benalla CIU's Shannon Murphy examines some of the damage at the local cemetery.

The Benalla Criminal Investigation Unit is confident of a quick arrest following a weekend of senseless destruction at the Benalla Cemetery.

Acting Detective Sergeant Shannon Murphy said at least $10000 of damage was caused by vandals sometime during the weekend, most likely during Saturday night.

He said it appeared the offenders jumped the fence to go on their rampage with more than 50 offences committed over a 300 metre area.

When the Ensign visited the cemetery on Monday morning, CIU officers were collecting evidence for forensic testing at the grave sites, which were littered with broken glass and smashed headstones — many old and irreplaceable.

Wreaths and flower bowls lay crushed and broken on the ground but most shocking of all, according to Acting Det Sgt Murphy, was the criminal damage in the children’s section of the cemetery.

‘Police have interviewed witnesses and have located several items of interest. If anyone has any information about these offences, contact the CIU at Benalla Police Station or phone 57621811.

Read more in the Ensign.

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