Thieves target LA County cemetery, steal plaques

Copper thieves have once again targeted Lincoln Memorial Park Cemetery in Carson, leaving a trail of destruction.  

Community volunteer Aisha Woods is heartbroken and outraged by the ongoing vandalism. 

"People are disrespecting sacred grounds. This is a sacred place," she said. 

The thieves are targeting copper nameplates, a valuable commodity, by breaking into mausoleums for easy access.

"What the vandals are doing right now is that they're taking the faces of the mausoleum and they're breaking these doors in order for easy access to the copper nameplates," Aisha explained.

Aisha reports that 120 copper nameplates were stolen from Lincoln Memorial Park Cemetery. This isn’t an isolated incident in Carson. Just across the street, Woodlawn Cemetery’s security cameras captured similar burglaries.

"Woodlawn was actually first this week, and then us. They took I believe it was this time, like six headstones," Aisha said.

For Aisha, this situation is deeply personal. Her mother, Margie, is buried at Lincoln Memorial Park. The burial ground opened in 1935.  

The 20-acre park is the final resting place for over 43,000 people. However, in 2023, the cemetery was abandoned by its owner after he suffered three strokes. Since then, the cemetery has lacked power, water and equipment to mow the grass.

"It is very hard to see loved ones come here and say I can't find my loved ones… the grass is so high," Aisha said.

Despite her pleas to city and county officials for assistance, Aisha says they refuse to help due to liability issues. As a result, she and other community members are left to manage on their own.

"Now that we have this thievery, I am more passionate to make sure that these loved ones here have relief and continue to rest in peace and continue to get the justice and respect because this is disrespectful," Aisha asserts.

In an effort to restore and maintain the cemetery, Aisha has set up a GoFundMe page to raise funds for industrial lawnmowers and other essential equipment. 

Those looking to help can click here for more information.