Tree grinches to face charges

BY STACI WILSON

Susquehanna police were expected to file summary charges Monday against three men and one woman for their involvement in the heist of community Christmas trees from two separate towns.

As of press time, charges had not been filed against the four and their identities were not yet made known.

Christmas trees were reported stolen in the early morning hours of Dec. 4 in Hallstead and Susquehanna.

The four, who range from 21 to 25 years old, are expected to make restitution for the trees. They could also face fines associated with the incidents.

The 14-foot Hallstead tree was erected at the Mountain View Plaza and had been donated for the community’s enjoyment by the Hallstead-Great Bend Lions Club.

The tree was scheduled to be replaced by the four suspects Monday evening.

A tree-lighting ceremony had been held in Susquehanna only hours before that tree was taken.

The Susquehanna tree was chopped down by the suspects.

Sgt. Xisongkham Phonechanh said the suspects still had possession of that tree.

The Hallstead tree was located thrown over an embankment on Front St. in Susquehanna.

Phonechanh said originally police believed it was Susquehanna’s tree they had located on Front St.

Acting on a tip, police brought the suspects in for questioning. They then admitted to taking the trees as a prank.

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