Grave site thief pleads guilty

Jack Latta jlatta@civitasmedia.com

September 10, 2013

HI HAT — A Floyd County man charged with violating a grave pleaded guilty Monday in Floyd Circuit Court.

Randall Vickers, Jr. 32, of Melvin, pleaded guilty to one count of violating a grave and one count of theft. For his guilty plea, Vickers received a probated two-year sentence, which was reduced to 120 days in jail, most of which he has already served. Upon completion of his jail sentence, Vickers will serve two years of probation and be regularly drug screened.

In court on Tuesday, Vickers’ attempt to apologize was cut short by Judge John David Caudill, who said, “There will be time for that later.” Vickers is scheduled to be sentenced Oct. 15.

Vickers was arrested last year, after he was found in possession of a graveside wreath which had been reported stolen from Newman Cemetery by Evelena Osborne. The wreath had been laid on the grave of Osborne’s son, Anthony, who died following a car accident in 2007.

Osborne said after Vickers’ arrest that she had had enough, and was tired of replacing wreaths and flowers stolen the grave of her son. Osborne offered a reward for information leading to the return of a graveside marker and information on the person responsible for its theft.

Osborne said that the practice of graveside theft was “disgraceful,” and indicated following Vickers’ arrest that a lesson had to be learned. “I want an example made of him,” Osborne said.

Osborne says she hopes the punishment handed down by the court will give would-be thieves pause before stealing memorials, not only from the grave of her son, but from any grave.