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Lathrop Police search for vandals.
park vandalism
A vandal drove into Mossdale Landing Community Park in Lathrop on Friday night and caused more than $10,000 worth of damage to the grass and irrigation system.

Lathrop Police detectives are searching for information about who was responsible for spinning donuts in Mossdale Landing Community Park on Friday night and causing more than $10,000 worth of damage.

According to Lathrop City Manager Steve Salvatore, the city has had previous episodes where vehicles have entered parks and done damage, but nothing as extensive as what city crews were alerted to on Saturday morning – a series of deep grooves that cut all the way down to the dirt and damaged underlying irrigation systems.

Salvatore said that he’s still putting together the total cost of repairs, but noted that turf, grading, and irrigation repairs will all need to be made before the area can be reseeded.

While the park itself does not have any surveillance cameras, police are currently speaking to nearby homeowners that may have caught the culprits on their personal security cameras and talking to those in the area to see if they have any information about who may have been responsible for causing the damage.

While there are some parks in Lathrop like the park at Woodfield Estates that are completely fenced in, sections of Mossdale Landing have openings where vehicles can illegally drive into the grass basin – which is what the vandal Friday night appeared to do.

While a full cost estimate for the repairs is not yet known, Salvatore believes that it will easily surpass the threshold for felony vandalism.

Lathrop Police Chief Ryan Biedermann said that detectives believe that it was a pickup truck that drove into the park and currently have several leads that they’re running down – noting that crimes like the one on late Friday night are difficult to stop in progress because they’re often crimes of opportunity that are carried out when nobody else is around.

Lathrop as a city is cracking down on reckless driving in general, and signs are currently being made that will be placed around town that list the penalties for doing burnouts in intersections, parking lots, or anywhere else – up to a $1,000 fine, 90 days in jail, and a 30-day vehicle impoundment.

Anybody with any information is encouraged to contact Lathrop Police Services at 209.858.5551.

To contact reporter Jason Campbell email or call 209.249.3544.