Vandals as young as four-years-old are believed to have repeatedly damaged a Catholic Church’s stained-glass windows in Corrigin, Western Australia, and police are powerless to act.
Police confirmed a gang of 10 — all aged between four and eight — had been seen in the church grounds last weekend and were also responsible for the vandalism of a nearby public park.
But under Australian law, children under the age of 10 are not deemed criminally responsible for their actions and cannot be charged.
“Corrigin Police were made aware of damage to some windows at the St Therese Catholic Church over the weekend… Police examined the scene and it appeared the windows had been broken by small rocks that had been thrown at the church,” Sgt. Troy Coumbe said.
Corrigin resident and church-goer Neil Bowron said he and his wife Nancy discovered the broken windows, the third such attack on the church, and alerted the police
He claims there has been two more instances of vandalism since.
“There’s not much you can do. You can’t put them in jail, you can’t charge them. The kids know that,” Mr Bowron said.
Mr Bowron repaired the window himself. “Hopefully that’s the end of it,” he said.
Sgt. Coumbe said police had been working with the family of the children, as well as the Corrigin Shire and Corrigin District High School to warn children about the consequences of anti-social behaviour.
“Overall, Corrigin enjoys a low crime rate with little reports of such petty behaviour thanks to the Corrigin community who take pride in their town,” Sgt. Coumbe said.
Source: WA Today