Security at cemetery increased, investigation ongoing
Julia Lovett-SquiresFlamborough ReviewMonday, March 29, 2021
Following a series of graffiti and vandalism incidents — including damage to gravestones — at Union Cemetery in Waterdown, the City of Hamilton and Hamilton Police Services have increased security and patrols of the site.
John Perrotta, the city’s cemeteries superintendent, said in a statement police and the city’s corporate security team “are working together to protect these areas as best as possible and deter any future acts of vandalism from occurring.”
Perrotta said the cost to clean up the damage was close to $5,000 — but “some items were irreparable.”
According to the Flamborough Archives and Heritage Society, the cemetery contains over 800 monuments erected as memorials to early pioneers — including over a dozen stones that date from the 1830s.
Ward 15 Coun. Judi Partridge said while there will be increased security, they aren’t planning to announce the specifics of the efforts and tip off the vandals.
“The criminals may decide to stay home for the next two weeks and not do anything and then come back out again,” she said. ”The bottom line is we want to catch this person.”
Partridge added a person seen in the cemetery looked to be in their mid-30s, but she admitted they don’t know if the person is the perpetrator. She noted the police have no suspects.
Hamilton Police spokesperson Const. Inderjit Bharaj said the incident is still being investigated and there is no further information available at this time.
“It is quite an active investigation,” Partridge said. “By reporting what was seen and what happened in Waterdown, if there are incidences in any other pioneer or municipal or private cemeteries, that is something that is really important for the police to hear.”
To make a report, visit hamiltonpolice.on.ca/report-crime/online-reporting.