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Five Teens Accused of Destroying Christmas Trees
September 26, 2017
Baton Rouge, LA (September 26, 2017) – Five teenagers are in trouble for allegedly destroying Christmas trees at Shady Pond Tree Farm in Pearl River, La. The damage is estimated at $5,985.
Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry (LDAF) investigators with the forestry division say the teens admitted to “tree tackling” or wrestling trees.
Commissioner Mike Strain, D.V.M., said, “We received a complaint from the tree farm owner that damage was done to his property over the Labor Day weekend. Our investigators coordinated with the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office to find those responsible.”
Investigators say approximately 10 trees were destroyed on Monday, September 4, 2017 and approximately 53 trees were damaged on Sunday, September 24.
A 16-year-old male was charged in St. Tammany Parish on Monday, September 25 with one count of felony criminal damage, one count of misdemeanor criminal damage and two counts of criminal trespassing.
Two seventeen-year-old suspects were also charged on Monday with one count each of felony criminal damage and one count of contributing to the delinquency of a juvenile. One is charged with one count of criminal trespassing and the other is charged with two counts of criminal trespassing and one count of misdemeanor criminal damage.
Another 16-year-old suspect from Carriere, Miss. turned himself into authorities today and was charged with two counts of criminal trespassing, one count of felony criminal damage to property and one count of misdemeanor criminal damage.
The fifth suspect, another 16-year-old male, is expected to turn himself into authorities today and will be charged with one count of misdemeanor criminal damage and one count of criminal trespassing.
Investigators say the suspects indicated they were “bored” and using marijuana when one of the teenagers came up with the idea to wrestle the trees.
Three of the teenagers are from Pearl River in St. Tammany Parish. No word on which city the fourth Louisiana teenager resides.