Vandals go on rampage
UNKNOWN offenders have devastated the community of Mossman with reckless acts of vandalism at Mossman State High School, four Front St shops and the Cairns Regional Council’s administration office.
The offenders stole red paint from the high school sometime during the night on Monday, January 23, and fire extinguishers from three Ergon vehicles parked on Front St.
At the high school, red paint was used on exterior surfaces, tables, walls and the ground and a fire extinguisher was used to spray foam through an open louvre into a classroom, the indoor sports centre and the airconditioning vent of the tuckshop.
The offenders also broke into a room at Mossman State Primary School and stole a laptop computer and continued to throw paint on shop windows, the main road and on the Ergon vehicles.
Mossman State High School principal Deborah Kachel said it was a disappointing start to the school year after no incidents over the holidays.
“Just as students started, someone wrecked things for them and they are disappointed too,” she said.
“The mess had to be cleaned by our staff and so they have to put in extra hours because they can’t leave it in that state as students need to use the facilities.
“The cost of the clean-up and repairs has to be taken out from other things we want to provide the kids, it’s not right and not fair for the students.”
Ms Kachel said the offenders need to remember the school belongs to the whole community and all of the school grounds, including the sports centre, are available afterhours to the community.
“When this sort of thing happens it costs our school and community money and the government starts to look at whether they shut school in terms of putting up big walls and that’s not we want,” she said.
“If you’re bored and don’t have anything to do, join a sporting team or volunteer - the Mossman community would welcome help with projects - there’s lots of things to improve the community rather than taking away from it.”
Mossman Police Senior Sergeant Cassandra Hill said the damage was extensive and the forensic team was called up from Cairns.
“A fire extinguisher was let go out the front of council chambers and we’ve located two out of three extinguishers, which will be forensically tested,” she said.
“It will cost a lot of money and lot of people’s lives have been disrupted, the shops, the schools, council and not to mention the police.”
Police are appealing for witnesses and anyone with information to contact Mossman police on 4098 2177 or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.