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Six juveniles suspected in cemetery vandalism

ENOCHVILLE — The Rowan County Sheriff’s Office may have found the suspects responsible for vandalism at a cemetery in Enochville.

On Thursday afternoon, the sheriff’s office announced it had identified six juveniles potentially involved in a number of thefts, vandalisms and burglaries in the Enochville area. Included in the series of crimes is the destruction of 37 tombstones at St. Enoch’s Lutheran Church.

Members of the St. Enoch’s congregation on Sunday found dozens of gravestones had been knocked over and broken. Some of the gravestones were recently placed in the cemetery. The church set up security cameras around its facility to prevent future incidents.

One of the six suspected juveniles has been placed in a juvenile detention facility, according to the sheriff’s office announcement. Officials are working to place another juvenile in a detention facility as well.

Rowan County Sheriff’s Office Investigator Nathan Phillips said only one of the six has been charged with crimes related to theft, vandalism and burglary in the Enochville area. Several of the other six were already on juvenile probation because of past convictions, according to the announcement.

Phillips said all of the six were under the age of 16. Four of the juveniles are male. Two are female.

The sheriff’s office didn’t release the name of any suspects.

Phillips said sheriff’s deputies will begin looking at previously unsolved cases in the Enochville area to see if any can be tied to the six suspected juveniles.

Phillips classified the case as still under investigation.

Contact reporter Josh Bergeron at 704-797-4246.

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