Five teenagers were cited for tearing down poles, cutting down a tree and doing other damage to playground on three separate occassions.
Three 18-year-old Whitefish Bay men, a 19-year-old Brookfield man and a 16-year-old Whitefish Bay boy were all cited with criminal damage to property and trespassing for the latest vandalism incident that occurred between 2 a.m. and 3 a.m. June 18.
The next morning, JCC officials found that vandals hit numerous targets. Among the acts of vandalism:
- A canopy from a large canopy tent had been removed and placed over the playground equipment;
- Several poles from the canopy structure were missing;
- Numerous "slow for children" signs were torn down and thrown about;
- A large red hippo sculpture had been rolled down a hill;
- A large giraffe sculpture was placed on top of a jungle gym;
- Picnic tables were stacked on top of one another; and
- A plastic children’s picnic table was left in the roadway.
The boys told the police they were at a graduation party, and after going to McDonald's for dinner, they went to the JCC to vandalize the property. It was the third reported incident in recent weeks at the JCC Day Care playground at 6255 N. Santa Monica Blvd.
Some of the boys admitted to two previous vandalism episodes. In , they put a row boat on the jungle gym, sprayed graffiti on the brick and windows from the roof, and tore off the Jewish star from the sign.
On , some of the boys removed a boat that was chained to a tree by sawing down the tree.
The boys said they chose to vandalize the JCC because it was convenient, not out of any anti-Semitism sentiment. One of the boys told the officers it was “like a senior prank and seniors don’t get in trouble for doing a senior prank."
JCC officials could not be reached for comment on the incidents.