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Confederate graves were 'tarred and feathered' at Indiana cemetery in early June

Posted at 9:54 AM, Jun 18, 2020

INDIANAPOLIS — Veteran's Affairs in Indianapolis says multiple graves at a Confederate burial site were smeared with tar and feathers earlier this month.

The VA is seeking information that could lead to the identification of those responsible for smearing tar and feathers on graves in the "Confederate Mound" section of Crown Hill Cemetery.

"Vandalism and defacement of federal property is a serious crime, and VA is working with law enforcement officials to identify those responsible," the department said in a statement. "VA is committed to maintaining our cemeteries as national shrines, and that includes cleaning these gravesites, which memorialize those interred at the cemetery."

The vandalism was discovered on June 6. Crown Hill Cemetery groundskeeper David Deems said he believes the graves were defaced that morning because the tar was still soft when he found it.

Deems said he was able to clean most of the substance off the graves, but some remnants remain.

The Confederate Mound is a federally-owned national cemetery that does not belong to Crown Hill Cemetery, though it is on its property. According to Crown Hill's website, 1,600 Confederate prisoners of war were buried at the site after they died at Camp Morton, a military base in Indianapolis.

Anyone with information about the vandalism should contact Crime Stoppers of Central Indiana at 317-262-8477.

This story was originally published by Katie Cox on WRTV in Indianapolis.