Vandals strike Kahuku Library
By Eloise Aguiar
Advertiser Windward O'ahu Writer
By Eloise Aguiar
KAHUKU — Vandals smashed the front doors of Kahuku Public and School Library over the Labor Day weekend, breaking all the glass and ruining a keiki reading corner.
Residents are offering a $1,000 reward for action leading to the arrest and conviction of the perpetrator(s).
Police said vandals struck between midnight Sunday and 6 a.m. Monday. Nothing appeared to be taken and there are no suspects, police said. The investigation is pending.
Bill Racoma, a La'ie resident, said he was so upset about the destruction that he offered a $500 reward, and soon the Friends of Kahuku Library, Kahuku library staff and Paul Staples of Staples Realty Inc. also pitched in $500.
Librarian Fran Corcoran said the panes from three doors and three side windows were destroyed when someone threw a 10- to 12-pound rock the size of a bowling ball at them. She estimated the cost to repair the door at around $3,000 based on a bill to repair the same kind of damage in 2004 when vandals broke the window panes.
A foam mat, used by pre-school children to play on, had to be trashed because shards of glass couldn't be removed, Corcoran said. And baskets of stuffed toys and pillows also had to be thrown out because they were covered in glass.
"It seemed so senseless," Corcoran said. "There doesn't seem any point to it."
Corcoran said a security guard had inspected the area between 10 p.m. and midnight Sunday and the band teacher discovered the damage when he came in for a practice Monday morning. No one went into the library, although they probably could have if they had pushed in the windows, she said.
Allowing the damage to go unpunished only lets vandals think they can get away with it, Racoma said. The reward lets people know that residents will not put up with this behavior.
"These people have to be stopped before they graduate into something more serious," he said. "We need to nip this in the bud."
Reach Eloise Aguiar at firstname.lastname@example.org.