Police/FireThe Examiner

Mt. Kisco Seeks to Catch Offenders Who Damaged Baseball, Softball Fields

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Mount Kisco officials are cooperating with Westchester County police in hopes of finding the culprit who damaged portions of the baseball and softball fields at Leonard Park with a vehicle more than a week ago.

Video surveillance cameras in the park captured footage of a white mid-sized SUV drive onto the large softball field, which is located closest to the pool, and doing “donuts,” which is intentionally spinning out, on Saturday, Apr. 6 at 8:37 p.m., said Recreation Superintendent Kyle Thornton.

Damage was done to the baseball field’s outfield grass as well as right center field on the softball surface, Thornton said. He said the village’s Department of Public Works (DPW) will look to repair the damage this week. Persistent rains have made the fields soft, which contributed to greater damage to the playing surfaces.

“The DPW staff will be out there and try to fix these ruts, and they’ll probably have to fill it with dirt and with seed,” Thornton said.

He estimated that the joyriders will likely cost Mount Kisco about $1,000 when factoring in the manhours and materials to make the repairs. A silver lining for the village is that the Little League fields, which will be in use for the new season starting this weekend, were unharmed while the baseball and softball fields currently don’t have games being played on them, Thornton explained.

By this week, the security company will retrieve the footage and hand it over to the county police so law enforcement can conduct its investigation, he said.

Mayor Michael Cindrich said the village may consider more aggressive measures to curtail the mischief in Leonard Park during off hours, including shutting off access to the park at nightfall to guard against additional damage being done to the grounds. Last year, there were vagrants sleeping, drinking in the Little League dugouts or using them to relieve themselves, forcing the village to install gates in front of them. There was also damage done to the teahouse last year.

“We have people dumping garbage, household garbage in the park,” Cindrich said. “We have free garbage pickup in our village but we can’t control how other people respond who don’t live here. So the field damage, it’s being worked on, but every day it rains it just causes more problems.”

In a separate incident, Cindrich said people connected to the youth soccer programs accidentally drove onto the soccer field when trying to move the nets, causing some additional damage.

Thornton agreed the village should take action to protect the park and encouraged law enforcement to aggressively pursue the vandals.

“Hopefully, we’ll catch them,” Thornton said. “My goal is to prosecute them as far as we can because this needs to stop.”





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