Tatura Pool suffers vandalism

Significant vandalism to the Tatura Swimming Complex will cost at least $2500 to repair after the site was broken into last weekend.

Police are investigating a deliberately lit fire inside the male toilets at the pool that occurred in the early hours of Saturday, March 25.

Shepparton Police Criminal Investigation Unit’s Troy Wickham said they interviewed two teenage males, aged 13 and 15 years, last week about the matter and they were issued with cautions.

‘‘We’re still making inquiries into a third male,’’ he said.

It was believed sometime between 1.20 am and 1.40 am on Saturday, March 25, three males were seen running from the pool.

‘‘Offenders have ignited toilet paper in a toilet bowl, which has spread and caused extensive damage to the toilet and the cubicle,’’ Shepparton Police Criminal Investigation Unit Detective Jeff Wren said.

Greater Shepparton City Council community director Kaye Thomson said depending on how much smoke damage was discovered, the estimated bill could rise.

‘‘By the time we get the change rooms cleaned up, repainted and then get a new toilet and plumbing completed the damage bill will be over $2500,’’ Ms Thomson said.

‘‘This dangerous act of damaging property could have resulted in people being injured.

‘‘It also ends up costing council and community financially.’’

Pool committeemember Gary Whyte said it was disappointing to see the damage.

‘‘When staff and the communityworked so hard to have a great season and someone comes along and does this,’’ he said.

Ms Thomson said it was fortunate the pool’s season had finished on Sunday, March 19, so the incident had not affected users of the complex.

‘‘However, even so, this is still a major interruption as the summer pool staff have finished for the season and we need to allocate limited resources to follow up on incidents like this.’’

The Tatura Country Fire Authority unit attended the scene and put out the fire and police are currently investigating the incident.

‘‘We are appealing for witnesses and are encouraging anyone that may have seen any suspicious behaviour to call police,’’ Det Wren said.

  • Witnesses can phone Det Jeff Wren at Shepparton Police Station on 5820 5777 or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

Article curtesy of the Tatura Guardian on 4 April 2017. Article and photos by Tara Whitsed.