Vandals target farmers, neighbors - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Vandals target farmers, neighbors

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SUMTER COUNTY, GA (WALB) - Some Sumter County neighbors are ticked off. Spray painting vandals targeted their property overnight hitting everything from lawn decorations to expensive farm equipment.

Through all that mess they might have left behind a message that could help identify those culprits.

Greg Odom is a farmer in Sumter County. His employees found two pieces of farm equipment vandalized Friday morning. A tank used for transporting fertilizer and water is one target, the riding tractor is another. Residue still remains after workers cleaned up obscene words and images from his property.

"Anger was the first thought," said Odom.

Workers removed most of the paint which stained part of his $100,000 riding tractor. It's practically brand new. The entrance posts to Indian road off Hooks Mill road also had symbols which Odom believes are Greek letters for Kappa Sigma. He says the green and red spray paint even match the fraternity's colors.

"We work hard and somebody who doesn't have a job comes out here and does something like that really hurts you," Odom added.

In his 40 years of farming he's never had his equipment vandalized. It's been stolen before. Now he plans on keeping it locked up at night.

"It's harder for us to get to but it's so thugs can't get to it and vandalize it," Odom noted.

Friends say someone even painted their 700 pound concrete horse not too far away on Indian road. They broke off the ears, damaged the leg, and even attempted to move it earlier this week.

"They've tried to steal the horse maybe as a fraternity prank or something, who knows," said a friend, Clay Harvey. "They had kids sitting out there at night trying to take pictures."

Harvey, who also farms with Odom, has one message for these vandals.

"They're going to be adults one day. They won't appreciate somebody defacing their property. Grow up. Appreciate and respect other peoples' property."

Even though Georgia Southwestern is about five miles away from the site of the graffiti, the Sumter County sheriff says he has  no reason to believe it's connected to the fraternity right now. He says this case is still under investigation. 

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