Two Face Felony Charges for Vandalism at Punxsy Cemetery

PUNXSUTAWNEY BOROUGH, Pa. (EYT) – Felony charges have been filed against two area residents who allegedly vandalized a mausoleum and multiple gravesites at a cemetery in Punxsutawney.

Court documents indicate the Punxsutawney Borough Police Department filed criminal charges against 28-year-old Joshua Mark Lockwood, of DuBois, and 22-year-old Taylor M. Buterbaugh of Punxsutawney.

According to a criminal complaint, around 9:28 a.m. on September 24, Punxsutawney Borough Police were called to Calvary Cemetery on Lincoln Way for a report of damage to the chapel and several gravesites.

At the chapel, police found that unknown individuals had entered the chapel and destroyed all of the glass vases and flowers and had also pulled all of the plaques and personal items off of the crypts in the chapel, the complaint states.

The caretaker then advised the officers that several gravesites were also damaged in the rear portion of the cemetery.

According to the complaint, police checked the area and found approximately 100 to 150 gravesites with damage to the forever cross lights attached to the tombstones.

The complaint notes the caretaker reported that the cost of the forever cross lights is estimated at $500.00 to $700.00 each.

Police also found that several statues of Jesus, Mary, lambs, and crosses were also smashed, and the individuals involved removed or broke a large number of veterans’ flags and military branch grave markers, according to the complaint.

All of the damage was photographed as evidence, including the areas of the chapel that were damaged and the approximately 60 gravesites that were damaged.

The complaint states the caretaker was asked to provide an estimate of the total damages to the gravesites and chapel and gave an estimate of $15,000.00 to $20,000.00 in damage to the gravesites and $2,000.00 damage to the chapel.

According to the complaint, around 1:45 p.m. on September 25, police obtained a Facebook post by “Taylor Kokichi Salhara” and Joshua Lockwood that included five photographs of Taylor Buterbaugh and Joshua Lockwood inside the mausoleum at the Calvary Cemetery. The photographs were posted on September 24 at approximately 6:00 a.m. with the caption, “This is what we do at 3:00am.”

Police then went to speak to Buterbaugh about the post.

According to the complaint, when police initially asked Buterbaugh if she knew why they wanted to speak to her, she said “no,” but when they asked a second time, she reportedly said: “Yeah, because of the cemetery.”

She was then transported to the Punxsutawney Borough Police Station for further questioning and provided a written statement about the incident.

The complaint states Buterbaugh reported that she and Joshua Lockwood went for a walk around 2:00 a.m. on September 24 and walked to the Calvary Cemetery mausoleum on Lincoln Way around 3:00 a.m. She told police that while they were in the mausoleum, she took pictures of herself and Lockwood prior to damaging the interior of the mausoleum. She reported they then exited the rear door and began walking to the rear of the cemetery and said they began pulling flags from the gravesites and tossing them across the ground.

Buterbaugh reported they then began pushing memorial items, such as the lights, off the top of the gravestones, and continued to damage items placed around and on top of stones for two to three hours before they left the area, according to the complaint.

She also noted that she posted the pictures of her and Lockwood to her Facebook account with a fake name.

The total number of gravesites damaged is estimated to be between 100 to 150, and the total number of flags stolen and damaged is estimated to be 100. The cost of damage to the forever lights is estimated at $4,500.00, the cost of damage to ground lights is estimated at $1,500.00, the total cost of damage to statues is estimated to be between $1,000.00 and $3,000.00, and the total damage to the mausoleum is estimated to be between $300.00 to $500.00, according to the complaint.

The following charges were filed against Buterbaugh through Magisterial District Judge Jacqueline J. Mizerock’s office on September 28:

– Institutional Vandalism Place of Worship, Felony 3
– Institutional Vandalism Cemetery Etc., Felony 3
– Historic Lots and Burial Places, Misdemeanor 1 (10 counts)
– Theft by Unlawful Taking-Movable Property, Misdemeanor 1 (10 counts)
– Criminal Mischief/Damage Property Intent Reckless Or Negligent, Misdemeanor 3 (9 counts)
– Criminal Mischief/Damage Property Intent Reckless Or Negligent, Summary (45 counts)
– Criminal Trespass/Simple Trespasser, Summary (2 counts)

The following charges were filed against Lockwood through Judge Mizerock’s office on September 28:

– Institutional Vandalism/Illegal Possession, Felony 3 (2 counts)
– Institutional Vandalism Cemetery Etc., Felony 3 (2 counts)
– Historic Lots and Burial Places, Misdemeanor 1 (10 counts)
– Theft by Unlawful Taking-Movable Property, Misdemeanor 1 (10 counts)
– Criminal Mischief/Damage Property Intent Reckless Or Negligent, Misdemeanor 3 (9 counts)
– Criminal Mischief/Damage Property Intent Reckless Or Negligent, Summary (45 counts)
– Criminal Trespass/Simple Trespasser, Summary (2 counts)

Lockwood is scheduled to stand for a preliminary hearing in front of Judge Mizerock at 1:00 p.m. on October 8.

A preliminary hearing for Buterbaugh has not yet been scheduled.


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