EVERGREEN, La. (KALB News Channel 5) - One of Cenla's historic church cemeteries has been vandalized three times.
"I am devastated. We have to catch them. They have to be brought to justice."
More than 40 graves have been vandalized at the historic Bayou Rouge Baptist Church cemetery in Evergreen, and for Stebo Pearce, this incident is inconceivable.
"It is a disgrace that something like this takes place. It has to be a sick mind to do something like this," said Pearce.
The damage was caused on three different nights. Headstones were toppled over, broken, and one is now missing.
"There is a lot of history up here, and a lot of people are upset. The word has got out on this, and we have a lot of people coming to the cemetery now to check on loved ones graves," said Chief Charles Mayeux of the Evergreen Police.
The church was established in 1841. It is recognized by the national registry of historic places - making the church grounds a treasure for the community and area.
Now some of the worst damage is pieces like this where it is broken in half, and for these monuments that are more than a hundred years old it makes it very difficult to replace.
"Those graves can only be repaired to the best that they can. They can't be replaced."
According to Chief Mayeaux, there are persons of interest and no arrest but he is optimistic there will be justice.
"I am going to catch them it is not a matter of if I catch them, It's when I catch them. We are going to pursue this and we are going to push for the maximum penalties."
If you have any information about the cemetery being vandalized, contact Evergreen City Hall at (318) 346-9844.