Two men suspected of driving on soccer fields and doing "doughnuts" are likely to be charged with criminal offenses, according to the City of Hastings.
Approximately 200,000 square feet of the soccer fields at Veterans Athletic Complex in Hastings were damaged on Sunday, with staff from Hastings Parks and Recreation finding the major damage on Monday morning.
It was reported to Hastings Police Department, which has led investigators to identify two adult male suspects allegedly involved in the property damage. Charges are expected to be filed in the coming days as the case remains under investigation.
The City of Hastings reports that the vehicles left ruts 8-10 inches deep, causing significant damage that will require extensive repair efforts. The city is in the process of working with contractors to find out just how much it's going to cost to repair the marred fields.
Because the fields are so badly torn up, there could be impacts to the spring sports season, namely the Hastings Futbol Club, a local youth organization that has 580 kids registered to play soccer this spring.
The club has 125 games scheduled on the fields between April 30 and June 30, and whether the fields will be up to par by then is in doubt.
“Vandalism and damage at any facility is discouraging; willful damage to this degree is both frustrating and disheartening,” said Parks & Rec Director, Chris Jenkins in a release. “This damage will be corrected, and play will resume, but it will require a lot of effort and expense to get there.”
More details will become available once criminal charges are filed.