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Grandmother says a vandal "destroyed my children's happiness"

3:46 PM, Sep 6, 2013   |    comments
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 PDF Document: Vandals slash pool

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- An Arlington grandmother said her grandchildren's pool was slashed and destroyed by a vandal. But now, she can't afford for the kids to be able to enjoy what's left of their summer.

Just ask Evelyn Stewart about her 14 grandchildren. She adopted four of them as her own last year.

"Well...Gosh. It's just great," she said with a smile.

At ages 6, 6, 8 and 12, she bought a large 18 foot wide Intex brand inflatable pool as a Christmas gift last year. Her grandchildren hey splashed since May.

"Oh, they loved it," she said emphatically. "I mean, They were in it all day long."

Now, when you go into her back yard, a large round spot in the ground shows where the pool used to be. The big blue pool cover is all that's left. A Jacksonville Sheriff's Office incident report values the pool at $450, though Stewart got it on sale.

"We don't have much at all and I cannot afford to buy a new pool," Stewart said as she wiped tears from her eyes.

According to the incident report, on August 13th an officer saw a 10 foot long slash in the vinyl pool in Stewart's back yard.

Stewart said she believes a vandal opened the gate and walked right into her back yard on the night of August 11th while her family slept.

The police report says Stewart reported damage to her solar lights. Stewart tells FCN she believes whoever vandalized the pool used the sharp end of the light to slash the pool.

"How could somebody destroy that?" She said while wiping tears from her eyes.

She said her grandchildren's summer memories are now deflated

"I want them to be happy," she said.

The incident report said the case is suspended due to the lack of a suspect.

First Coast News

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