Vandals’ joy ride wrecks golf course

Published 11:53 pm Saturday, August 25, 2012

Two holes at Clear Creek golf course were damaged early Saturday as two vandals drove a truck onto the course, Sheriff Martin Pace said.

Phillip Johnson, 19, 214 Center Point Road, drove a 2001 Ford F-150 onto the golf course about 2 a.m. Saturday, Pace said.

Johnson and his passenger, Austin Smith, 20, 124 Clear Creek Road were arrested and charged with felony malicious mischief at 2:17 a.m. Saturday, according to jail records.

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The duo was arrested after Sgt. Jason Bailess saw them speeding away from the golf course, Pace said.

Clear Creek is owned and maintained by the county and is the only public golf course in Warren County.

“This effects the tax payers of Warren County,” Pace said. “Parts of the course are not going to be usable for some time.”

The truck heavily damaged the green of the 18th hole, and did minor damage to the tee box of the 17th hole, said Clear Creek golf pro Kent Smith. The holes won’t be closed, but a replacement pin will be used on the 18th hole, Smith said.

“The golfers will just have to play around it until it heals,” Smith said.

Getting the grass back in playing condition will take three to four months and come with a hefty price tag, Smith said.

“There’s a lot of sod damage. It’s going to be $5,000 to $10,000 easy,” Smith said.

Johnson and Smith were held without bail Saturday awaiting their initial appearance Monday in Warren County Justice Court.