Originally Published: May 31, 2018 9:45 p.m.
Four teenagers, ages 12 to 13, are facing criminal charges after allegedly using an ax to damage playground equipment at Big Park School in the Village of Oak Creek. The estimated damages exceed $1,000, according to a Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office (YCSO) news release.
Deputies were dispatched to the school on Sunday, May 27, just after 5 p.m. regarding vandalism in progress. The reporting party said several young teenagers were hitting the playground equipment with an ax. As deputies arrived, they witnessed one of the suspects striking one of the slides with the ax. A deputy ordered the boy to drop the ax and he immediately did so, deputies reported.
A total of six teenagers were detained. The ax was seized and deputies saw significant damage to several pieces of playground equipment. Deputies determined four of the six teenagers were directly involved. All four admitted participating in the vandalism and will be charged with criminal damage, deputies said.
School officials were notified and demanded prosecution, deputies said.
“Each of the teenagers was released to their respective guardians after being fully briefed on the callous nature of their child’s actions and pending court appearances,” said YCSO spokesperson Dwight D’Evelyn.