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Vandals kill fish in city fountain

The city park fountain in downtown Demopolis was vandalized over the weekend when person or persons unknown threw bread and peanut shells into it.

“We came out here on Saturday and about 30 of the fish were dead — Saturday and Monday,” said City of Demopolis horticulture director Barbara Blevins. “Somebody threw peanuts in there — shell and all — and bread. A lot of bread.”

The koi — the breed of fish occupying the fountain — will eat a wide variety of food, but Demopolis mayor Mike Grayson said that Blevins told him there was so much bread in the fountain, you couldn’t see the water. The fish likely overfed themselves.

Blevins said that she and her crew spent two days cleaning out the fountain of the food debris and the dead fish.

“We’re going to fill it back up with water and hope and pray that they won’t mess with it any more,” Blevins said of the vandals. “We lost 40 to 50 fish, and they were fairly large. Now, I’ve got to take time off and go to Meridian and get some more fish and bring them back and put them back in. It just costs so much more in money and time.”

Grayson said that he was disgusted to hear about the vandalism done at the fountain, and believes that malice was involved.

“It’s a shame that something as beautiful as the fountain is was treated this way,” Grayson said. “I know we’re talking about fish, but they are living creatures. Just the malicious destruction and loss of life — for no reason. I mean, what was proved?

“Barbara and the city work very hard to try to take care of what we’ve got, and to make things nice for the people here. I hope that somebody will come forward with information.”

Blevins and Grayson both advised people not to try to feed the fish, as city employees perform that duty. Anyone with information regarding this crime is asked to contact the Demopolis Police Department at 289-3073 or City Hall at 289-0577.