Centerville police are investigating numerous reports of spray-painted graffiti on UPS trucks, houses, businesses and dumpsters that have evolved to felony charges because of the damage expense.
Police Chief Ed Buchholz told town council at its Oct. 10 meeting that police have several leads and videos of a couple young men committing the vandalism starting Sept. 24-25.
CPD conducted 12 criminal mischief investigations in September.
Graffiti under the North Morton bridge preceded the current spree, Buchholz said.
He encourages the suspects to turn themselves in, and requests the public contact CPD with additional information.
Because of recent vandalism, council decided to postpone Main Street/HYPE Wayne County’s request to paint a young children’s activity on Maplewood Park walkways.
Grant monies through Wayne County Area Chamber of Commerce for the project must be spent by the end of the year, so council asked them to divert that money to other projects and offer Centerville the funding at another time. Councilors want to purchase cameras and additional lighting that they estimate at more than $4,000 to prevent damage.
“We all still want it, we just want to make sure it’s done in the correct order,” Josh Tudor said.
In other business
- Main Street Centerville will benefit from sales of protective eclipse glasses at several shops and eateries. A new website being developed will promote local businesses rather than the Main Street organization.
- Town Manager Kevin Slick said he’s working on plans for a surplus items auction at 11 a.m. Nov. 1 in CPD.
- Building commissioners pursued 26 reported code enforcement violations in September ranging from abandoned vehicles to tall grass.
- Centerville teacher Mike Day received permission to organize the Turkey Chase run at 1 p.m. Nov. 18 on the same route around town as 2022.
- Council President Dan Wandersee shared 2023 statistics on Wayne County’s health rankings (87th out of 92 Indiana counties). He also provided population estimates showing a gain of about 25 for Center Township between July 1, 2020, to July 1, 2021. Wayne Township lost about 30 residents, and other townships increased or decreased a couple.
- Building Commissioner Kevin Branson is a newly certified fire inspector and Shane Banks is now a wastewater operator.
- At a Walmart drive, firefighters collected about $600 and about $200 in food for their holiday distributions.
- Several firefighters provided Fire Prevention Week activities for students. Residents are urged to check smoke detector batteries and chimney flues before winter heating. They also can request that CFD install free detectors.
- Tree roots destroyed sewer line tiles on McMinn Road and they’re being relined.
- More motorists are using the town’s electric vehicle charging station at Warm Glow.
- Council was to conduct an executive session on Oct. 17 to discuss strategy regarding a real property transaction.
- Council’s next work session, including a public hearing on an additional appropriations ordinance for nearly $350,000 toward the general fund, road/streets and fire, will be at 7 p.m. Monday, Oct. 30, a day earlier to avoid Halloween activities.
- Town hall will close Nov. 10 for Veterans Day.
A version of this article appeared in the October 18 2023 print edition of the Western Wayne News.