Mountaineer Little League ballfield vandalized

Published: Jan. 20, 2023 at 6:52 PM EST
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KANAWHA COUNTY, W.Va. (WSAZ) - Walking into the Mountaineer Little League concession stand ahead of the season normally strikes up excitement but this year it feels more like a strikeout.

Vandals destroyed some of the doors on the booth and threw utensils all over the ground -- but that is not all the damage done to the Dave Patton field.

Outside, the vandals busted the field’s breaker box and cut the copper wiring on each of its lights.

A board member discovered the damage during a routine, offseason check of the field Thursday but it is not clear when the vandals actually damaged everything considering the season ended in October, according to Board President Elijah Young.

One thing that is clear to board members is that whoever did this knew what they were doing.

“This took over time, estimating we have six light poles, a breaker box side by side this had to take a four-wheeler, pick up truck had to be more than one person involved,” Young suggested.

“Had to take six and eight days to take everything.”

One thing that is also obvious to the board is the threat to on-field safety

“This definitely changes our schedule, we can’t play a game after a certain time in the evening because it’ll be too dark and that becomes a safety hazard to our players,” said Concession Coordinator Michelle Kinder.

However, the league still plans on starting the season on time even if it will take time for their home field to be repaired.

“We are a little league community so we kind of know what we’re all going through,” Young said.

“We all kind of know what we’re all going through we know what we’re all going through on the community side.”

“This is a hiccup for us, a speedbump, but we do intend to have a great, successful season moving forward and we want to make sure we’ll have everything safe for our children,” Kinder added.

South Charleston police are investigating the incident.

Early estimates show it could cost upwards of $100,000 to repair and replace all the damaged parts of the ball field. A GoFundMe has been set up to defray some of the expenses.