This summer, vandalism and other crimes seems to be spiking in Walkersville. Most of the cases seem to be random and not directed at one person.
That does not appear to be the case in this latest caper. Town Commissioner Don Schildt and his wife, Peggy, found their front yard vandalized in a unique and very disturbing manner. Someone very carefully spelled out the word “DICK” using an herbicide. The resulting dead grass in the middle of the yard left large, block letters for all to see.
Commissioner Schildt “awoke on about the morning of June 30th” to find the damage to his lawn. It’s certainly not what you expect to see in your yard when you walk out the front door. Surely, a town commissioner does not want everyone in town having to see it every time they drive by his home.
Maryland State Police’s Resident Troopers and the Frederick County Sheriff’s Office were contacted. Neither believed they would be able to find the culprits.
Commissioner Schildt and his wife say, “We know the person that did the vandalism.” They did not wish to name the person for our interview at this time. They do not believe anyone else was the target of the culprits’ scheme.
This incident adds to more property crimes in Walkersville. Commissioner Schildt shares residents’ concerns over these crimes. “Our resident troopers should patrol weekends more between 12 a.m. and 4 a.m.,” he proposed. He also recommends that “residents should be proactive in putting up security cameras, etc.”
More and more residents are putting up security cameras. A few homes in Old Town have placed cameras on the outside of their homes to capture criminal activity. Most started with the side mirrors of cars being smashed by people driving by on the tight streets. More crime in the area make the cameras more a hope to catch the culprits.
“We’ve had a few residents contact us about installing security cameras with digital video recorders,” says Michael Kuster, owner of Digital Age Solution, LLC. A few properties have had the systems installed, but this summer has seen more activity, according to Kuster. He noted that the technology has evolved quickly with better cameras, faster Internet connections and solid state technology making systems more affordable and more robust.
Maryland State Police support the use of security cameras and DVRs, but also ask residents to report any suspicious activities to police. They cannot be everywhere at once and hope to prevent further crimes by catching the criminals in the act.