Chief Cracking Down on Cemetery Trespassing

MAHANOY TOWNSHIP -- Mahahoy Township's police chief is cracking down on trespassing and vandalism at the township's cemeteries.

"(People are) using, buying drugs, selling drugs," Chief Brandon Alexander said. "We also got people dumping garbage. We also have people breaking into buildings, knocking over tombstones."

The chief said with all of the problems he's been having recently, he's had to double his patrols at the cemeteries in the township.

"(My officers) would make two passes through all the cemeteries a shift," Chief Alexander said. "So, now we're doing three to four passes a shift every night."

A few weeks ago, someone broke into the shed at one of the township's cemeteries causing more than $12,000 worth of damage. The owner, Champ Holman, said this has to stop.

"I just think it's total disrespect for those who have departed," Holman said.

Earlier this year, someone drove over tombstones in another cemetery.

Newswatch 16 asked people in the community what they thought about the trespassing. Ashley Yorks of Mahanoy City finds it odd.

"They're more or less like a little kind of scary to me," Yorks said. "So, like, I just try to more or less stay away from them if possible."

The township has seven cemeteries in total.

The chief said patrolling them all will be a big job, but it has to be done.

"We gotta send a message that we're not going to tolerate this," Chief Alexander said. "So, if you're in here, you're going to get caught, cited, arrested, whatever we gotta do."

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