BRUSH PRAIRIE, Wash. (KOIN) — A popular softball field used by both kids and adults in Brush Prairie was vandalized with hateful messages over the weekend.
Four buildings in total were tagged with red spray paint. It happened in broad daylight, according to the Prairie Field Association, a non-profit that manages the field. The group said they are heartbroken and don’t know why they were targeted.
Their snack shack was broken into and the water heater damaged, which flooded the building. Messages spray painted on the walls, floors, and on the side of buildings included a counter-clockwise swastika, suggestive language, and explicit images.
“It’s just kind of crazy to us because we are such an inclusive park—to see these words, it’s hurtful,” said Heather Heffley, Vice President of the Prairie Field Association.
Heffley said a grounds keeper who lives on the property saw three young men at the field leave the area on bikes Saturday. Later that day, he discovered the vandalism.
“We’ve got kids who practice out here,” said Heffley. “We have—I think the youngest is 8—that has games out here and that is really sad to see the type of graffiti that was done with the kids.”
By Monday, the obscene phrasing and symbols were covered up. Local contractor, Darren Clifford who owns his own construction company, volunteered his time to restore all of the buildings. He had actually just finished painting the facilities a few months prior.
“For me to come out and put my time into it, and then somebody just comes and stomps on it, it’s like getting your heart ripped out,” said Clifford.
He does the work for the non-profit free of charge and told KOIN 6 News it will cost a couple thousand dollars to repair everything.
The non-profit has filed a police report.