Teens arrested for vandalism at Sinsheimer Park in SLO

February 23, 2020


Vandals damaged the playground area at Sinsheimer Park in San Luis Obispo on Sunday, the third incident since Oct. 2019. This time, police arrested four teens suspected of setting playground equipment on fire.

Shortly after midnight, 911 callers reported hearing what sounded like fireworks in the area of Sinsheimer Park. Officers arrived and arrested two teens while two other teens fled the scene, but were caught shortly afterwards.

Firefighters quickly extinguished the blaze, which appeared to be started with cardboard strips children use to slide down the hill. Fire damage was primarily limited to the upper climbing portions of the children’s play structure, police said.

Because the four suspected vandals are minors, their names are not being released at this time.

In October, vandals cut out and stole a large portion of the synthetic turf from the playground. The city paid about $10,000 to replace the turf, which took about two weeks for the repairs to be completed.

In December, the San Luis Obispo Parks and Recreation Department closed a slide for three to four weeks because of vandalism; the slide was set on fire.

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Sounds like some serial arsonists assuming they’re we’re involved in the December slide burning. Hopefully the arrest and some real life consequences will have some positive long term affects on the vandals.

Thinking back to my youth its usually one kid in the group that has a strangle hold on the others for whatever reason and that kid can get the others to go along with really stupid acts of vandalism…

That being said every kid involved should be mandated by a court to pay their parents back for the expense they are about to endure. The park should get a whole new playground paid for by all of the moms and dads of these little hooligans….always a silver lining…..

Simple: They damaged it. They were caught, now they can work to repair it. (Or, their parents can pay up and they can repay their parents)

Pete, So you are making cruising Higuera and Marsh an equivalent of vandalism and arson? If these teens can’t control their “confusion, raging hormones and ignorance” it is because no boundaries were ever set to teach them that control. Just more Liberal doublespeak to confiscate more money from the rest of us to give the little criminals “things to do.” I also suggest you ask the families of the firefighters that died in the fire in Porterville how they feel about the little criminals that lacked anything better to do than set the library on fire.


Once you decide to become a parent you are responsible for your children, and their actions until the age of 18.

There are so many incidents involving kids that happen late at night. Why are these kids allowed out late at night. Blaming the taxpayers for not providing these vandals with activities is not logical.

There are so many great kids out there that keep out of trouble and have no problem finding activities to keep them busy.

Their parents should be held responsible, and pay to have this park and structures replaced. Also kids should do community service. Maybe then the parents will take responsibility.

It’s not about being a senior citizen it’s about caring what goes on in our community. It’s about

keeping our community parks safe for kids, and families who appreciate somewhere to go for family activities.

He didn’t say the parents weren’t responsible for their actions. He merely pointed out that they may not be bad parents. Kids do stupid stuff. Even kids from good households.

Seems reasonable for the parents to be sent the bill for repairs.

Sinsheimer Park is so nice, with wonderful playground equipment including a zip line, a great slide/play structure, and a hill for kids to slide down. Destroying this lovely area is utterly disgusting! Why would anyone do this? These teenagers have a serious problem committing arson at such a young age. Can’t wait til they get to the high school where some other teens burned down the robotics lab…

The typical reply from older ‘responsible’ citizens would be to assume the teens are bums with lousy parents. I’ll stick my neck out and disagree.

Look around, use your memory to imagine your youth. What is there to do for our young’uns? Especially in this modern sanitized world there is very little outlet for their creative interests, energy, rebellion and other drives our kids naturally have. Sit home and play video games?

Sure, messing up a playground is no place to express those things but give the kids a break, since we give them little else.

It is pure folly to expect the average kid to be above average- self driven to achieve high goals. Study hard, obey your parents, invent some new thing in the garage. Most kids don’t even have any goals, I don’t think they even know who they are or what they are doing. They are teenagers, a frightful age of confusion, raging hormones and ignorance.

I don’t know what would be a good outlet for all that energy but for most I don’t think afternoon basketball is it, though a worthwhile endeavor for some.

I imagine most citizens in SLO love our Thursday Farmers Market affair. Do you know how and why that was created? The local high school kids would cruise Higuera and Marsh that night and in an effort to crush the one remaining cool and relatively harmless outlet for them we created an event to make their event impossible. Teenagers cruising and meeting up is an American tradition, I did it long ago. We wanted to see and be seen, hang out. That’s what they need, and society has pretty much wiped even that out. With their expendable time they need something to do, that they want to do.

If you doubt our dear city leaders would do something so callous I call your attention to the early days of the homeless here. Most hung out in Michell Park, the city did their best to ignore the growing issue. After some complaints that some of the homeless found sparse refuge sitting against the back of the Veteran’s Memorial Wall there the city tore the wall down. What would you call that?

Your response really bothered me and I asked myself why? It’s reasoned, BUT really just wrong because the attitude that these poor teens are victims of boredom and cannot help themselves really HARMS those responsible. These kids have problems, are destructive and lacking in certain cues which allow them to cross boundaries other teens will not do. It is parenting deficits, individual or group sociopathic behavior and just simple malice. No excuses.

BOREDOM?? What the hell ever happened to teens getting work permits and holding down after school jobs? I have been constantly employed by one company or another (sometimes as many as four at once) and working 25 to 80 hours a week since I was 17 years old. Yes, that includes all six years of college in the Bay area.

No doubt they were pissed because ol’ Mom and Dad (who likely both work full time), wouldn’t buy them the latest and greatest video game, so they decided to go to the park and do what all of their liberals elders have been teaching them: “Resist.”

Teens can only work 4 hours per day during the school year.

Teen work programs no longer exist like they did when you were coming up. Employers had an incentive to hire teens back then. Now they have to be motivated to hire a teen.

Personally I do teach my kids to “resist”; peer pressure, racism, sexism, group think, negativity. Among other things.

I don’t teach them to break the law. Too bad for you that you assume otherwise.

we had the same types of limitations as teens including a reluctance to hire. Fast food places, retail stores and movie theaters/entertainment venues are the types of places we worked. The 4 hours per day prevents the “boredom” issue giving them a place to be, a place to develop good habits, get trained in things like customer service, cash handling, etc. Nothing has changed in that respect.

“Teen work programs no longer exist…”

Yeah, that’s right- and that’s because of the ridiculous increases in the minimum wage.

How many employers can afford (even in this great economy we have going right now) to pay kids upwards of $15 an hour to sweep floors or fill little bags of French fries?

So today’s kids can’t get jobs, and, instead “hang out” and get into trouble.

Opponents of the absurd minimum wage increases have continually pointed out that those artificial “raises” will destroy the availability of jobs for young people and those seeking to enter the work force. And they’ve been correct all along.

This might be moderately understandable if you’re a kid growing up in more poverty ridden areas of the country, but the youth especially in THIS part of the country have it exponentially easier and better than those in aforementioned areas. The ocean, state parks and hiking trails, skate parks in every town, numerous venues for music, etc. A lot more exposure and access to great things than where I grew up; also, as a parent, if you’re not involved in your child’s life and can’t support or address helping him/her in finding endeavors and outlets they enjoy (or might), then it’s simply failing as a parent. There’s a lot more than simply clothing, sheltering, and feeding a child that constitutes as parenting, but a lot of people aren’t ready for children and cover the bare minimum of what’s necessary to (at least try) prevent raising a shit head.

Is there a webcam there? If not there should be. Several.

I don’t know. If you look at some of the Public Safety pages on Facebook. many people, including commercial users post videos of offenders. The quality it horrible and the distance makes it impossible to identify much of anyone. I don’t believe the investment provides much in the way of benefit. This is a social issue (lack of parental oversight caused by single parent homes) that needs to be addressed on a large scale and we are failing to do that is well.