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Man confesses to Death Valley National Park vandalism

Officials at Death Valley National Park are crediting social media in locating a man who defaced, by way of graffiti, multiple sites at the popular tourist destination.

As stated in a news release, park officials said a Canadian man identified himself and confessed to the crime.

The graffiti, according to the release, was found on rocks, a well, and historic structures in Echo Canyon, Butte Valley, Homestake Dry Camp, and Crankshaft Junction.

“Park Rangers had some leads pointing to the man’s identity and appealed to the public for more information on April 14,” the release stated. “The National Park Service appreciates that many people shared the story on social media and contacted the National Park Service with tips.”

The release went on to say that the man, identified only as “Steve” told officials that an acquaintance saw the story on social media and brought it to his attention. Additionally, park officials said the man, at the time, was travelling with his dog, named “Lacy.”

“Steve, a resident of British Columbia called the tip line himself on April 17,” the release noted. “The following day, he spoke with the investigating park ranger, confessed, and apologized. Charges have not been filed against the man yet. Penalties could include a fine and or restitution charges. The man’s cooperative attitude will likely be a mitigating factor. Lacy is blameless. She is a dog.”

The graffiti, according to park officials happened in January 2019 and January 2020. Charges are pending.

The National Park Service (NPS) Investigative Services Branch handles tips on cases in all national parks and other NPS sites.

Tips can be submitted anonymously to the National Park Service Investigative Services Branch (ISB).

Their tip line can be reached via a phone call or text at 888-653-0009, or email to nps_isb@nps.gov.

Park rangers are still patrolling Death Valley National Park during the current temporary closure due to the COVID-19 virus.

Through traffic is still allowed on CA-190 and Daylight Pass Road, according to park officials.

Contact reporter Selwyn Harris at sharris@pvtimes.com. On Twitter: @pvtimes

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