Vandals hit neighborhood park in Virginia Beach

Posted at 9:08 PM, Jul 23, 2012
and last updated 2012-07-23 21:10:16-04

A Virginia Beach city park was hit by vandals sometime last week.

It happened at the park inside the Hillcrest Farms neighborhood, which is off Indian River Road.

Graffiti is spray painted down the slides, on signs and even on the sidewalk.

“That’s the last thing that you want your children to see,” see Dari O'Brien, who lives near the park.

“To see something like this, it’s a big thing for our community, even though it’s ‘tagging’ or spray painting, it’s still a big thing for our community,” said Sam Nolder, another resident of the neighborhood.

Residents say it's never just been another city park to them; it's a community gathering spot.

“There’s a lot of neighbors, my wife’s one of them actually. Everything she plants grows, so a lot of the plants that are around here have been donated by the homeowners, and installed by the homeowners, maintained by the homeowners,” said Nolder.

“Even though it’s the city’s responsibility, we still take pride in our neighborhood, so it’s a shame to see vandalism taking place,” said O’Brien.

The residents NewsChannel 3 spoke with say they plan to get the park cleaned up as soon as possible, but the city may actually beat them to it. They say they’ve already notified someone to remove the graffiti.

It’s a problem they’re all too familiar with. The city says that with about 180 neighborhood parks in the city, they get reports of vandalism almost daily. Whenever the graffiti includes profanity or appears to be gang-related, they say they have it cleaned up immediately, and no matter what the vandalism is, they try to have it taken care of within a few days of it being reported.