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Police recovering pieces of stolen sculpture
PORT ARTHUR- by Haley Bull
Police are tracking down pieces of a $120,000 sculpture that was cut up and sold for scrap. A famous artist created the sculpture that sat in front of the Port Arthur Public Library until someone took it.
"Family was one of the important things in my life," sculptor David Cargill said.
His piece of art portraying families welcomed fathers, mothers and children to the building since the 1980's.
"I had done several things that were family kind of things," he said.
Cargill made the statue in 1967. It was one of many of his pieces displayed throughout Southeast Texas.
"It's just most discouraging to have done something which you felt like was a decent piece of sculpture you know, to have it go down the drain," Cargill said.
Small pieces of metal and an engraving of the 85-year old artist's last name are all the thieves left behind.
"Their mother would not be proud of 'em," he said.
Workers at the Port Arthur Public Library called police Feb. 27th to report someone had taken the statue.
Police said an appraiser estimated the value of the sculpture around $120,000, which means the crime is being investigated as a second-degree felony theft.
Officers are recovering it piece by piece.
The back of one police car was filled with parts officers said they found at a scrap metal business in Liberty County Tuesday.
"Where it was recovered the pieces that we have, they were sold for scrap and for just several hundred dollars," Port Arthur Police Sgt. Scott Gaspard said.
Police followed their leads to a house in Port Arthur Wednesday where they found more parts of the sculpture.
"It looks like some type of cutting device was used to cut it off at the base and just pull it off," Gaspard said.
"I don't think they cared. It just look like it was money to them, that's all," Cargill said.
Police said they've identified suspects but officers have not made an arrest.
"We're making it a priority," Gaspard said. "It belongs to the citizens."
A piece of history, stolen from the community.