Independence police looking for person who vandalized historic estate site

INDEPENDENCE, Mo. -- The Independence Police Department is asking for your help to identify a person they believe vandalized the Bingham-Waggoner historic site.

IPD released images from security video on Tuesday in hopes of find the person responsible.

But this isn't the first time it's happened.

"There have been a few over the past couple years," said Meg Lewis, spokeswoman for the city of Independence. "The city and the historic society have worked in collaboration to take steps to install motion activated lights, cameras and alarms on the different buildings on the property."

Lewis said they hope with the newly released images the public will be able to help them find this person.

She said the historic site is closed during the colder months of the year, and there's a curfew, so if neighbors see something unusual they should call the tip line.

"We need help watching those and making sure that they are kept safe for generations to come," Lewis said. "So if you see something late at night, if you notice individuals walking around after hours, let IPD know so that we can keep an eye on these important pieces of our community."

Over the years the site has seen broken windows, stolen merchandise, graffiti and other forms of vandalism that takes away from visitors' experience.

The Bingham-Waggoner historic estate

"The Bingham-Waggoner is a major historic piece of our community," Lewis said. "We have hundreds of school children that come through the area and look at it. We have individuals from across the country, and outside, just to come and look at these historic mansions, and we want to make sure it's here for years and years to come."

Lewis said history is the backbone of Independence, and it needs to be preserved.

"These homes represent that in a very visual way," Lewis said. "So when vandalism is taken place here, be it a broken window or graffiti or just someone doing something on the grounds that isn't appropriate, it takes away from that a little bit, and it takes away from the community."

If you know who vandalized the Bingham-Waggoner, please call the Tips Hotline at 816-474-TIPS, IPD tips at 816-325-7777 or email leads@indepmo.org.

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