“Malicious mischief” is what police are calling multiple acts of vandalism that total more than $300,000 at one lakefront, gated-community.
The destruction occurred at the Villages development over several months beginning last October, according to Campbell County Sheriff’s Department Detective Brandon Elkins.
Villages’ personnel became aware of the vandalism last fall when a truck belonging to a construction firm was discovered at the bottom of a hill, according to Mark Kotellos, security director for the Villages. When the area around the truck was surveyed a flatbed trailer was discovered missing and the truck had been vandalized prior to being driven under the hill. Police have since connected, Jonathan T. Stanford, 18, 506 Old Long Hollow Road and a juvenile to the crime. The two were reportedly hunting in the area when they decided to commit the alleged crimes, Elkins said.
After reporting damages to police, Kotellos said it was quiet at the non-operational development for several weeks. But when the alleged vandals returned it was in a big way.
Around March 7, Stanford, brothers Logan T., 19, and Dylan S. Thompson, 18, both of 1903 Iveydale Road, LaFollette and another male juvenile entered the development through the woods, Elkins said. Once inside the gated area the trio allegedly caused thousands of dollars in damage.
The young men reportedly hotwired multiple pieces of excavating equipment then used them as “bumper cars,” according to Elkins. They then turned the bulldozers and backhoes on a construction trailer. Flipping it on its side, the group “dismantled it with the equipment driving over PVC pipe, wiring and other construction items in the process,” Elkins said. After the youth had inflicted that damage they pushed one of the D-5 bulldozers over a hill, according to Kotellos.
Aside from the damage inflicted by the hotwiring, the youth also broke glass out each piece of machinery.
Dylan Thompson and Stanford are also accused of master-minding the destruction of a home in the Villages.
After the repairs were made to the excavating equipment the duo returned through the woods finding the bulldozer in working order.
Hotwiring it again, they allegedly drove the 6,500-pound vehicle into a home that was under construction, according to the arrest warrants. After knocking the home off its foundation, the bulldozer was used to destroy a garage and a Jayco camper trailer.
Elkins said aside from the massive destruction generated by the group they also stole tools, spray-painted the truck they destroyed and used paint on various other items inside the gated community.
They also attempted again to roll the bulldozer into the lake, according to Kotellos.
After gaining information regarding possible suspects Elkins and Detective Matt Wassom began interviewing the six young men.
“Each one confessed,” Elkins said. “These crimes were not related to alcohol or drug use at all.”
Stanford was charged with two counts of vandalism, two counts of burglary, criminal trespassing and theft of property $1,000-$9,999.
Logan Thompson was charged with vandalism and criminal trespass while his brother Dylan Thompson faces two counts of vandalism, two counts of burglary, criminal trespassing and theft of property $1,000-$9,999.
The juveniles involved face charges ranging from criminal trespassing to burglary depending on their level of involvement, Elkins said.