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Tombstones toppled at historic Hollywood Cemetery in Richmond

Mayor: 'Disturbing final resting places is contemptible, criminal and will not be tolerated'
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Posted at 12:02 PM, Mar 14, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-15 00:52:39-04

RICHMOND, Va. -- Visitors at Richmond’s historic Hollywood Cemetery made a disturbing discovery Saturday morning when they found several memorials and grave markers pushed over by vandals.

The destruction of many granite markers happened in one of the more popular spots of the cemetery, President's Circle. That is where Presidents John Tyler and James Monroe are buried.

Jefferson Davis, the president of the Confederate States, and his family are also buried the cemetery, which also has a large monument to the 18,000 Confederate soldiers buried there.

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Hollywood Cemetery vandalism discovered Saturday, March 13, 2021.

"The cemetery Board of Directors and management are aware of the vandalism on the property," officials with the cemetery said in a statement Sunday. "A police report has been filed and the matter is under investigation at this time."

Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney condemned the vandalism in a statement released Sunday night.

"This weekend’s desecration at Hollywood Cemetery is morally wrong," Stoney said. "Disturbing final resting places is contemptible, criminal and will not be tolerated."

The 135-acre cemetery, which dates back to 1847, is located along the banks of the James River next to the city's Maymont and Randolph neighborhoods.

"Hollywood Cemetery was designed in 1847 as a 'rural' style garden cemetery to escape the grid-like monotony of city cemeteries," reads a description on the cemetery's website. "Landscape architect, John Notman, specifically left trees and other plants untouched when designing the cemetery's landscape in order to create a peaceful haven for Richmonders."

Anyone with information about the crime is asked to contact the cemetery at 804-648-8501 or info@hollywoodcemetery.org. Tips can also be sent anonymously to Crime Stoppers at 804-780-1000, online at www.7801000.com or the P3 Tips Crime Stoppers app.

This is a developing story, so anyone with more information can email newstips@wtvr.com to send a tip. If you see breaking news, and can do so safely, shoot a photo or video and send it to CBS 6. You can also upload photos to our Facebook page or email pics@wtvr.com from your phone.