A Crime Stoppers tip led to the arrest today of a Columbia man for the June 1 vandalism of a 140-year-old fountain on Radcliffe Street, Charleston police said.
George Michael Kirkpatrick, 25, of Long Pointe Lane, surrendered to investigators this morning and he is charged with damage to personal property over $5,000, police spokesman Charles Francis said. Kirkpatrick is being held in the Al Cannon Detention Center, he said.
Antiques dealer David Skinner owns the $25,000 fountain, and his surveillance cameras recorded images of a man shoving it over in his fenced-in yard. The fountain broke into five pieces when it fell.
The footage showed two other people with the vandal that night, but the pair remained outside yard. All three ran off when the fountain toppled over, Skinner said.
Skinner offered a $5,000 reward to anyone who helps capture, convict and make an example of the vandal. He said he hasn’t yet paid out the money because the culprit hasn’t been convicted.
Skinner said he received a call from the same person who reported Kirkpatrick to Crime Stoppers, but he still has no idea why the vandalism occurred. He thinks it was a random act and that the vandal probably just happened upon his place, which lies a short walk from the King Street corridor of bars, he said.
“I don’t think he targeted me specifically,” he said. “I don’t know the guy they arrested.”