About $50 worth of damage was reported at the Lake Linganore dredging site earlier this week.
Michelle Doster, general manager of the Lake Linganore Association, confirmed the damage in an interview Friday. The vandalism consisted of graffiti, beer cans littered around the equipment and rods driven through a post in the middle of the lake, near Nightingale Beach.
The dredging project, which is estimated to cost about $18 million, is aimed to remove 100,000 cubic yards of sediment from the lake, enough to fill more than 13 Goodyear blimps. The city of Frederick is paying half, and the association and county are each paying roughly a quarter of the cost.
Taylor Clarke, a spokeswoman for the Frederick County Sheriff’s Office, said the vandalism occurred late Monday or early Tuesday.
Clarke said it appears that the vandal or vandals either swam out to the equipment or used a boat, and then inserted metal pins into a vertical beam to create a makeshift ladder.
“It is believed that the suspect/suspects were likely using this to get higher on the barge and jump into the lake,” Clarke said in an email.
The graffiti damage comes to about $50, she added.
Doster said one of her main concerns is that Mobile Dredging and Video Pipe Inc. could discontinue the project if future vandalism or damage to their equipment occurs. She added, however, that the company hasn’t indicated that would happen.
“It’s a financial issue, how much continuous vandalism occurs and if extensive damage is caused to their equipment,” Doster said. “It could get to a point where it could no longer be worthwhile to continue that project.”
Craig Renner, a spokesman for the Maryland Environmental Service, the group heading the project, could not be reached for comment Friday.
The Lake Linganore Association is offering a $1,000 reward to anyone who offers information leading to a conviction regarding the vandalism. Clarke said there were no suspects as of Friday afternoon.
“This case will be suspended pending any additional information. Citizens are asked to remain vigilant in the area and report any suspicious activity,” Clarke said.