Public asked to be patient as investigation continues
WASHINGTON – October 29, 2014 – A 21-year-old New York State woman, Casey Nocket, has been identified as the primary suspect in recent vandalism cases that affect eight national parks in the western United States.
National Park Service investigators have confirmed that images were painted on rocks and boulders in Yosemite National Park, Death Valley National Park, and Joshua Tree National Park, all in California; Rocky Mountain National Park and Colorado National Monument, both in Colorado; Crater Lake National Park, in Oregon; Zion National Park and Canyonlands National Park, both in Utah.
Investigators continue to collect evidence of the crimes, conduct interviews, and are consulting with the U.S. Attorney’s Office about potential charges. We ask the public to exercise patience and allow due process to take its course as the investigation moves forward.
The image in Rocky Mountain National Park was reported to the park and removed in late September before similar images were found in the other national parks.
Ice and snow now cover the image at Crater Lake National Park, and it may not be accessible for assessment and clean up until next summer.
An image in Yosemite National Park was removed by an unknown person or persons.
If people visiting these parks come upon these images, they should contact the nearest park ranger with information about the image location. Visitors should not attempt to remove the images.
The National Park Service was contacted on October 20 about this vandalism case. The investigation began immediately.