OLDHAM COUNTY, KY (WAVE) – Several juveniles face charges after approximately 80 street signs were stolen or removed in Oldham County.
Oldham County police said the signs were removed as part of a social media challenge on Snapchat where juveniles would document themselves stealing or removing the signs.
“They disappeared early in the morning -- 2:00, 3:00, 4:00,” Oldham County Judge Executive David Voegele said.
Officers say the signs began disappearing in August of 2018.
“The green signs were all missing,” Oldham County resident Jeff Walton said. “Probably not the smartest thing to do is take street signs.”
Police said 31 juveniles were identified as being involved in or having knowledge about the thefts.
Eighteen juveniles have been charged with theft by unlawful taking and criminal mischief.
Police said the missing street signs presented a danger because emergency responders may not have been able to find homes.
“Kids shouldn’t be doing it,” Oldham County resident John Hummel said. “The parents are ultimately responsible for how the kids act.”
Police say they were able to figure which teens were involved by information they got from a search warrant for the teens’ social media accounts. They found pictures of the stolen signs and video evidence and text messages between students who made reference to the stolen signs.
“Most of the kids are not bad kids, but they made a bad mistake,” Oldham County Chief Greg Smith said.
The Oldham County Road Department estimated between 60 and 70 signs have been replaced at a cost of approximately $3,000 and 30 hours worked.
Judge Voegele said they will be seeking restitution in these cases.