Duo Arrested For Stealing Teddy Bears, Other Items From Parkland Memorial

Florida police on Sunday arrested two people in Parkland for allegedly stealing items placed by mourners at the makeshift memorial outside Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

Kara M. O’Neil, 40, and Michael Shawn Kennedy, 37, were booked on felony suspicion of removing or disfiguring a tomb or a monument, according to court documents acquired and published by CNY Central. O’Neil and Kennedy were still in jail on $1,000 bail as of Tuesday morning, according to the Sun-Sentinel. 

Police cited the fact that O’Neil and Kennedy “had no permission” to remove anything from the memorial. They were also said to be at the site at an “unreasonable hour.” According to the documents, O’Neil and Kennedy were arrested at 10:20 p.m. Sunday night.

The Broward County Sheriff’s Office court documents said plaques, teddy bears and pinwheels from the monument were found in the backseat of a car belonging to the suspects. According to witnesses, O’Neil and Kennedy “willfully and knowingly” damaged the memorial by stealing the items. 

On Monday, Parkland announced the “delicate process” of archiving the items placed at the monument would begin soon.

The alleged theft came one day after the “March for Our Lives,” a student-led demonstration that followed the Feb. 14 mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in which 17 people were killed. Roughly 15,000 people had gathered Saturday in Parkland to lend support for “March for Our Lives.”

“It’s completely disgusting,” Broward County Commissioner Michael Udine told the Sun-Sentinel about the theft. “It’s sickening to me, especially in light of the fact that everybody has tried to treat every aspect of this with so much dignity and respect.”

GettyImages-931926546 A man and a woman were arrested for allegedly stealing items from the Parkland shooting memorial. Pictured above is the memorial as seen on March 14, 2018. Photo: RHONA WISE/AFP/Getty Images

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