BEND, OR -- National Forest investigators continue to look into vandalism at Tumalo Falls, highlighted by a Prineville man’s Facebook post. Brett Nelson’s photo and story of a California family seen carving their names into a railing has been shared 65,000 times. Jean Nelson-Dean with the Deschutes National Forest tells KBND she can’t comment on an ongoing investigation, but confirmed no arrests have been made.
She says the agency has received a number of calls from people shocked by the brazen nature of the crime. "I think that’s what caught, essentially, the nation’s attention. It was all over the east coast, and the Today Show; we got calls from everywhere. Unfortunately, I don’t think it was the vandalism; it was the arrogance, which I think people are a little tired of."
Nelson-Dean says Brett Nelson is cooperating with investigators and has received a number of tips through his personal Facebook page. While not everyone may feel comfortable confronting someone actively committing vandalism, Nelson-Dean says everyone can help. "You don’t want to put yourself in harms way. You can always call our office if you see things. If you take a photo and say when it happened, that’s extremely helpful and we can preserve it. We only have a few law enforcement officers, and they cover the Deschutes National Forest, the Ochoco National Forest and the Fremont-Winema National Forest."
Those who vandalize public property can face fines and jail time, if convicted.