Boynton police investigating costly vandalism

Posted at 1:51 PM, May 31, 2016
and last updated 2016-06-01 04:24:13-04

Boynton Beach police are investigating a case of vandalism that caused costly damage to the Ezzel Hester Jr. Community Center on Monday. 

Detectives believe a group of boys in their early teens broke into the press box, destroying items and stealing football equipment.

“Right off the bat, we're very upset,” said Michael Byrd, the president of the East Boynton Wildcats football and cheerleading team.

For the past six years, Byrd has shared sports and life lessons with hundreds of kids.

“The kids need something to do to stay out of trouble, they need something to keep them busy,” he said.

Now, Byrd is busy cleaning up a mess. This group of teens broke into the facility where the Wildcats store all their files, trophies and uniforms. The group trashed it, even stealing some football gear.

“For someone to come do this and take that, they're hurting the community, they're hurting the kids in the community,” Byrd pointed out.

Parks and recreation Director Wally Majors said this isn't the first time someone's targeted the park.

In April someone shattered $25,000 worth of windows, including windows in the press box.

“We like to see kids having fun, enjoying themselves, laughing, playing. Not destroying property,” Majors said.

He's asking the city commission to invest $15,000 for surveillance cameras and an alarm system at the facility. He wants to prevent another vandalism.

“Vandalizing the pride, vandalizing the reputation, vandalizing the ability of people to have some sense of comfort,” he said.

Byrd said he’d encourage the teens responsible for this to join his football program where they can do something positive instead of negative.

A neighbor told police she saw a group of teens jumping out of windows at the facility and running away Monday at about 3:30 p.m.

Anyone with information is asked to call Det. Peter Zampini at 561-732-8116 or Crime Stoppers of Palm Beach County at 800-458-TIPS. You can remain anonymous. Tips can also be submitted via MyPD app and