On Sept. 29, East Lansing Police Department, or ELPD, reported the theft of turf from the public space on the north side of Division Street parking garage in downtown East Lansing.
"The East Lansing Downtown Development Authority, The City of East Lansing and several community donors have invested a lot of time, resources and money into creating vibrant public spaces in Downtown East Lansing for the community to enjoy during the COVID-19 pandemic," ELPD wrote in a Facebook post. "We appreciate those who have enjoyed these spaces responsibly. Unfortunately, negative behaviors, including theft and vandalism, have continued to be a persistent problem, and have made it difficult to continue with these placemaking efforts."
In an email, ELPD Deputy Chief Steve Gonzalez said vandalism and theft have been recurring in this area and the EL Fresco area, especially during the summer.
"In this specific incident, the persons caught on camera rolled up and stole a large section of the synthetic turf that was part of the place-making space owned by the DDA and City," he said. "The City’s Community and Economic Development Staff have worked tirelessly to provide innovative space for community members to enjoy in the downtown area."
In addition, security cameras were recently installed downtown "to deter these types of behavior," the department said.
As of Sept. 30, the turf has been returned and no legal action will be pursued.
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