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Man charged after allegedly knocking over headstones

The Columbia Police Department said it arrested a man for allegedly toppling over headstones in the Columbia Cemetery on East Broadway.

According to court documents, the superintendent told police several times headstones had been tipped over and some even broken overnight between Oct. 2 and Oct. 5.

The superintendent told police large headstones need heavy equipment to put back in place, costing hundreds of dollars. Some headstones are very old and irreplaceable, according to the superintendent. There had been several thousand dollars worth in damage, court documents said.

The superintendent said she placed a surveillance camera and allegedly captured images of Patrick Christensen entering the cemetery after dark. These were the nights headstones appeared to be knocked over.

On Monday, police said Chief Geoff Jones stopped Christensen in front of the cemetery. Court documents say he asked for an attorney.

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