It’s not very ethical to steal from anyone, but such a crime is especially disgraceful when it occurs at a cemetery. This is a place where people go to honor and mourn their deceased loved ones, and knowing that someone has stolen something from a gravesite can make the grieving process that much more difficult.
Maryland police are looking for a man wanted on multiple theft and burglary charges, including theft at a cemetery. The man is accused of stealing more than 100 bronze vases at a cemetery. He then sold the vases for scrap metal, netting more than $100,000.
Law enforcement officials began their investigation in February. It is believed that there could be hundreds of victims. Many were not even aware that the vases were stolen. It is unknown if the man currently lives in Maryland. His last known residence is in Delaware. He is also wanted by Delaware State Police for theft and burglary charges.
Stealing from a cemetery is also known as grave robbing. Grave robbing is not only immoral but also illegal. It is also very disrespectful to the family members as well as the deceased. Family members often place flowers, vases, toys, figurines and other objects on their loved one’s graves as a form of decoration and honor. Therefore, when these items are stolen, it can be especially devastating.
Those caught stealing anything of value from a cemetery can face theft charges. The potential punishment they could face is based on the value of the item stolen. Therefore, a person could face a misdemeanor or a felony, which could result in jail time and fines.
While many cemeteries have surveillance cameras and other security measures to help prevent theft and other crimes on the premises, there are no guarantees. Usually, cemeteries are not responsible for items stolen from gravesites. It’s a good idea for theft victims to contact their local police department. If you file a report, this will allow police to track theft activity in the cemetery and take appropriate action.
The best course of action is to avoid placing items of value on the gravesite. If an item has personal value to you or is worth a lot of money, it is wise to keep it in a private place. Cemeteries are public spaces that anyone can enter, and urns, vases, flags and flowers are often stolen. In addition, many people vandalize graves, causing extensive damage to headstones. These crimes unfortunately occur in cemeteries all over the country.
Many people think nothing of stealing items, but theft charges can be elevated to felonies in some cases. Stealing from a cemetery is an especially egregious crime because it involves the dead.
Accused of theft? Avoid a conviction with help from the Columbia theft lawyers at the Law Offices of Todd K. Mohink, P.A. He can strategize the best legal defense possible. Fill out the online form or call our office at (410) 774-5987 to schedule a free consultation.
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