West Lafayette's new beloved 'Turtle X-ing' sign stolen

The city plans to press charges if they identify the person, or people who stole it.

Posted: Aug 27, 2019 1:01 PM
Updated: Aug 30, 2019 11:02 AM

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) — A West Lafayette boy's wish to save the turtles was spoiled this weekend. Now, people are wondering who stole the city's newly placed turtle crossing sign.

All that is left standing now is a blank post sitting on Cherry Lane, just north of Purdue's campus. 


Turtle Crossing sign installed in early August

The sign went up just three weeks ago when 8-year-old Jack Wietbrock wrote Mayor John Dennis saying the turtles crossing the road "need our help." Dennis said it's disappointing that someone would do this.

"It's one those things that you slap your forehead over, you know, what are they thinking? You know, obviously this is a community response to a problem that one of our young citizens felt was important enough to where they write me a letter," said Dennis.

When Jack's mom, Michelle Weitbrock found out that sign was missing, she said it was disheartening.

“We live in a pretty welcoming and respectful community and so I think the news was just a little disheartening,” said Weitbrock. “At the same time, I hope that people will just focus on the original story which was to do good in their own communities.”

Weitbrock said these types of project ideas aren't always easy to bring to reality.

“There are things here for a reason and they're not just to be stolen but you know that a lot of thought and time goes in behind these things,” said Weitbrock.

The city plans to press charges if they identify the person or people who stole it.

“It's a crime and should we find out who the guilty party was we will go ahead and encourage prosecution,” said Dennis.

There are three other turtle signs the city has since installed around the community, but this was the original. They hope to replace the Cherry Lane sign soon. 

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