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      Vandals play mailbox baseball in two counties

      44 Mailboxes have been vandalized in Boone and Howard Counties since July 5th.

      Authorities in Boone and Howard counties are trying to find those responsible for destroying 44 mailboxes, since July 5.

      Two Tuesday mornings in a row, Lana Garrett woke up to find her mailbox destroyed by what appeared to be a baseball bat.

      Garrett said, As I TMm leaving for work, I notice that all of our mailboxes have all been knocked off. The first Tuesday morning, I called my husband on the cell phone and told him. That evening, he stopped and picked up new mailboxes. He and our neighbor put up new posts and new mailboxes. The following Tuesday morning, those mailboxes were all knocked down.

      Authorities say the Garretts are just one of 44 families in Boone and Howard counties that are victims of vandals playing a dangerous game.Boone County Sheriff TMs Department Detective Tom O TMSullivan said, When you have got this many vandalisms, it TMs clear that it TMs probably the same people and they are out driving around playing, what they used to call, mailbox baseball.

      Mailbox baseball usually involves teenagers driving around late at night with a baseball bat and whacking mailboxes as they drive by.

      Some people try to protect their roadside mailboxes by building barriers made from wood, steel or even iron. Striking one of these barriers from a moving vehicle with a baseball bat can be dangerous.

      In some previous Boone County cases, vandals have broken bones and lost teeth when the bat kicked back toward their body after hitting a solid object. Some people even put up dummy mailboxes filled with concrete to discourage mailbox baseball players. The price of a standard replacement mailbox is between $10 and $50, depending on the size and quality.

      Garrett said, It TMs pretty disgusting when you have worked hard all day and you have to come home and deal with that in the evening. Some people are very inconsiderate.

      Most of the damaged mailboxes were reported from the Harrisburg area.

      Columbia CrimeStoppers is offering a reward for information leading to the arrest of those responsible for vandalizing mailboxes in the Harrisburg area of Boone and Howard counties this month.

      If you have any information, authorities urge you to call CrimeStoppers at 875-TIPS.