“My son is crushed. Again!” says one mom after second wave of vandalism at Burney’s Bailey Park

BURNEY — For the second time in as many months vandals have left a wake of broken and damaged children’s toys at Burney’s Bailey Park. Although it was not immediately known what day the vandalism happened, word of the most recent incident began to spread on social media yesterday afternoon, April 5. The same park, which sits on Bailey Ave., adjacent to Raymond Berry Intermountain Pool, was struck by vandals one month earlier, sometime on or before March 7.

Area residents, fed up with what they see as a recent spike of vandalism throughout the small town of just 3,200 citizens, are now demanding action and hoping those vandalizing the small, but popular park can soon be identified and held accountable.

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Burney resident Haley Reed was first to call attention to the park’s most recent vandalism.

“I’m seriously so sick of this. The brand new baby swings are broken again,” Haley said yesterday in a social media post. Haley, who enjoys taking her young son to the park, said, “My son is crushed. Again!”

“I really hope there’s a good explanation and that it’s not some jerk purposely ruining the swings!”

Haley’s sister-in-law, Cristal Reed, was among others who last month reported a similar, but more destructive vandalism, after discovering several of the park’s climb-on playground sets had been spray-painted, etched, or otherwise broken and damaged. Both of the toddler’s, safety swing-seats, the same ones that were destroyed beyond repair this time, were damaged beyond repair last month as well.

Two, commercial grade, bucket-style, toddler swing seats were once again destroyed by vandals at Burney’s Bailey Park. A different pair of the same two swing seats, which sell for $50 to $100 each, were broken beyond repair a month ago. Haley Reed photo

“Well it makes me very angry!” Cristal later told SCNS when asked about the recent spats of vandalism.

Cristal, whose husband was born and raised in Burney, said the couple recently moved back to the area from Redding to escape the city’s high crime rate.

“It’s just sad to see our beautiful little town being vandalized,” Cristal said. “It’s crazy anyone would even have the mindset to do something like this.”

In addition to the recent bouts of vandalism at the park, parents and area residents have also recently reported finding serious health hazards, such as used condoms and syringes throughout the park and even left on the children’s play-sets.

“It’s all just too much,” Burney resident Sandra Mulrooney told SCNS after seeing the recent posts about the vandalism. “We live in too small and too nice a town for this type of nonsense.”

Others were equally as frustrated, with many area residents venting on social media about the ongoing problem, while several offered seemingly simple solutions – such as a strategically placed pair of “game-trail cameras” – to catch the culprits in the act and help identify them.

“This is ridiculous! How sad that someone feels like this is a fun thing to do,” wrote resident Michelle Harper. “Imagine if they redirected their energy into something more productive?”

“This is sickening, this could not be done by a human who is in their right mind,” Jeanette Braccialini commented. “So sad for the little kids who could be enjoying the park.”

Life-long area resident, Ashley Westlund – who grew up here and is raising her children in nearby Johnson Park – later told SCNS, “This town is sooo crazy now!”

“Growing up here, my husband and I never thought we would have to lock our cars, think about the kids playing, or even about installing cameras around our house.”

“Burney was once such a safe place,” Westlund continued. “I guess times change, but it’s just sad that we now have to constantly watch over our shoulders.”

Anyone with information regarding the vandalism is encouraged to contact Shasta County Sheriff’s Burney Mountain Sub-Station at (530) 245-6070. Callers can remain anonymous.

Click any image to open full-size gallery.

Last month’s vandalism involved a different pair of the same two bucket-style toddler swing seats, as well as several other of the park’s climb-on play-sets. Cristal Reed photos


Contact the writer: trevor.rcns@gmail.com

Trevor Montgomery, 47, moved last year to the Intermountain area of Shasta County from Riverside County and runs Riverside County News Source and Shasta County News Source. Additionally, he writes for several other news organizations; including Riverside County based newspapers, Valley News, The Valley Chronicle, and Anza Valley Outlook; as well as Bonsall/Fallbrook Village News in San Diego County and Mountain Echo in Shasta County.

Trevor spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg, breaking his back, and suffering both spinal cord and brain injuries in an off-duty accident. (Click here to see segment of Discovery Channel documentary of Trevor’s accident.)

During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations; including Robert Presley Detention Center, Southwest Station in Temecula, Hemet/Valle Vista Station, Ben Clark Public Safety Training Center, and Lake Elsinore Station; along with other locations.

Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, and Personnel/Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.

Trevor has been married for more than 28 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and his “fluid family” includes 13 children and 15 – but soon to be 16 – grandchildren.

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