Breaking News
More () »

WNEP.com | News, Weather & Sports from WNEP-TV — Proud to Serve Northeastern and Central Pennsylvania

Alleged Grinch attempts to steal Christmas tree and lights, police say

These trees are decorated by volunteers with the Hanover Township Lions Club.

HANOVER TOWNSHIP, Pa. — Police in Luzerne County are looking for whoever is responsible for vandalizing a Christmas tree display.

The trees along West End Road in Hanover Township are decorated by volunteers from the Hanover Township Lions Club.

Officers said someone snapped one of the trees in half and took off with the lights on the next tree.

Members said it will cost about $700 to repair.

"I don't know why they get their kicks from destroying other people's property. Number one, they have no respect for people anymore," Hanover Township Lions Club President Bernard Mozloom said.

Members said they noticed the alleged vandalism when they were doing a dry run on Monday to test if the lights worked.

It usually takes volunteers about four hours to decorate all 40 of the trees.

"We did it all ourselves, and we're all sort of elderly, and it chagrins you to see stuff like this," member Ralph Gillespie said.

It's been a Lions Club tradition to decorate the trees along West End Road in Hanover Township for more than 50 years.

"There's tens of thousands of cars that go past here during the holidays, and you could hear people from all over the Valley express how happy they are when they see this," Hanover Township Lions Club Vice President Frank Ciaverlla said.

Police said whoever is behind this faces charges of theft and criminal mischief.

The Lions Club is now planning to put up security cameras and offering a $100 reward.

"If we do ever catch anyone that's doing it, believe me, I will have them prosecuted to the fullest," Mozloom said.

Despite all of this, the Christmas tree lights will be turned on next Wednesday.