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More than 100 bronze vases stolen from Lake Charles' cemeteries, suspect arrested

Posted at 11:45 AM, Oct 02, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-02 12:45:46-04

LAKE CHARLES — At least one person has been arrested after more than 175 bronze vases were stolen off graves in two Lake Charles' cemeteries.

More than 100 vases were stolen from Consolata Cemetery and, next door, nearly 70 vases were taken from Prien Memorial Park.

Sgt. Brenda Desormeaux confirmed toKPLCthat the Lake Charles Police Department is investigating the theft of vases at Prien Memorial Park. Police are also investigating whether vases may have been stolen from other area cemeteries.

“If anyone has a loved one interred in Prien Memorial Park, and they are concerned that their final resting place may be affected, they can feel free to contact our office, and we will be happy to assist them,” Joel Brinkley, general manager of Prien Memorial Park, said in a statement.

In custody is 36-year-old Kenneth Stillson of Ragley.

He faces several charges including aggravated assault with a motor vehicle, desecration of graves, obstruction of justice, aggravated flight from an officer and illegal possession of stolen things.

Sue Way says she was heartbroken after visiting her husband's grave to find the vandalism.

She says she can't imagine what kind of person would steal from a grave.

“I was heartbroken, heartbroken for my husband but for all these other graves that had been desecrated, and I can’t imagine what kind of person would do this,” Way said.

Stillson is being held without bond at the Calcasieu Parish Jail.

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