SANTA CRUZ (CBS 5) – Vandals refuse to let a dead Santa Cruz CHP officer rest in peace.
The headstone at the Oakwood Cemetery grave site of Officer John Pedro was stolen over the weekend. Pedro was buried ten years ago after he died in a crash during a 2002 car chase. Memorials for him have since been vandalized on four occasions.
The 200 pound headstone was pried out of the ground and stolen from the cemetery sometime Saturday night. Friends and family are at a loss as to why Pedro would have been targeted.
“If you had a reason to hate John, or have a vendetta against him, he’s gone. Do whatever it is you need to do to pray to your god or whatever it is you do. But leave his family alone,” said former CHP officer Debbie Bratby.
His memory has been plagued by vandalism over the past decade. A cross erected at the crash site was cut down and highway one freeway signs have twice been vandalized.
There is a $6000 reward for information on the headstone theft.
The owner of the cemetery said a new, more secure headstone will be installed at no cost.
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