Agricenter International Dealing with Repeat Vandalism

Agricenter International Dealing with Repeat Vandalism

People are sneaking in after dark and using their cars and trucks to go mudding. Their idea of a good time is costing the Agricenter thousands of dollars.
MEMPHIS, TN (localmemphis.com) - Vandals are wrecking land at Agricenter International.

People are sneaking in after dark and using their cars and trucks to go mudding. Their idea of a good time is costing the Agricenter thousands of dollars.

"After we have rain, they decide they want to come out and mud the grounds. They just cut donuts and tear it up," says the Agricenter's president, John Charles Wilson.

Wilson is stuck with cleaning up the mess that's left behind.

"Both the Agricenter and the park (Shelby Farms) are having these issues. People come out at night and just think they can do whatever they want."

Wilson has caught several people after it's too late. Many are teenagers, some adults. They don't realize the damage they're doing.

"Agricenter has hundreds of thousands of dollars of farm research going on for different companies," Wilson says. "People use land to train dogs, Homeland Security trains dogs here. The Shelby County Sheriff's Office trains dogs here."

Wilson is working with the sheriff's office to catch the vandals.

A teenager was just sentenced in Juvenile Court for tearing up bamboo the Agricenter grows for pandas at the Memphis Zoo.

"There's significant damage," Wilson says. "We've had over $19,000 damage to bamboo for the pandas. Agricenter is having to recover from it."

"It's no longer fun and games. We're going to take a hard stand on it. I'm not saying don't come on the property. We're going to prosecute (vandals)."

They have installed several cameras all over the property and plan to use them.
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