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Authorities seeking suspect after Floyd County park damaged

A $2,500 reward is being offered for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the...
A $2,500 reward is being offered for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person who damaged a Floyd County park after driving a car onto a basketball court.(Floyd County Parks Department)
Published: Jan. 27, 2021 at 10:23 AM EST
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FLOYD COUNTY, Ind. (News and Tribune) - A $2,500 reward is being offered for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person who damaged a Floyd County park after driving a car onto a basketball court.

Floyd County Parks Director Roger Jeffers said the incident occurred around 8 p.m. on Jan. 18 at Kevin Hammersmith Memorial Park.

Security footage shows a group of what appears to be teenagers playing basketball on the Phillips’ Pavilion court. A person can then be seen driving a car onto the court, which is one of two basketball courts at Kevin Hammersmith Memorial Park.

Jeffers said the driver then maneuvered the car to perform three “doughnuts” on the court, leaving behind skid marks and other damage.

Because the court is covered, rain won’t help remove the marks and the surface can’t be spray-washed, Jeffers said.

He sought an estimate to paint and re-stripe the court, and he said it’s $5,000.

There’s a gate blocking vehicular access to the area, but Jeffers said it appears the person opened the gate to drive the car onto the court.

“With other kids playing basketball there it makes it even worse. Something could have happened,” Jeffers said.

There are multiple security camera photos of the incident posted on the parks’ Facebook page, and the Floyd County Sheriff’s Department is investigating the crime.

Jeffers said most people who use the parks are respectful of the facilities.

“It’s just frustrating that it ruins it for all the kids who were up there playing,” he said.

Jeffers said he will present the painting estimate to the Floyd County Parks Board for the body to decide how it will address the damage.

Last week, the Floyd County Commissioners approved an update in regulations specifying that county parks are closed between 11 p.m. and 6 a.m. It was more of a housekeeping move than a new policy, as the regulation hadn’t been officially updated since Floyd County and New Albany split from their joint parks operation.

Anyone with information about the Jan. 18 incident is asked to call the sheriff’s department at 812-948-5400.