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288 gravestones vandalized

WELLSVILLE, Ohio – More than 200 gravestones in an eastern Ohio cemetery have been pushed over or destroyed by vandals, including those of the small town’s founder and his wife.

Wellsville Police Chief Joe Scarabino said Tuesday that three vandals toppled 288 markers last month. Some date back to the 1800s and could never be replaced. Damage could be as high as $500,000.

Scarabino said a 19-year-old man was charged with felony vandalism and obstructing official business after the Dec. 27 incident. Scarabino said charges also have been sent to the county prosecutor for two juvenile suspects.

Police say it’s unclear why the vandalism occurred.

Scarabino said wet weather conditions have made resetting the stones impossible in the cemetery that sits in Wellsville, a village of roughly 3,500 people.