70-pound gravestone of Houlton’s founder stolen

Posted Sept. 11, 2012, at 8:19 p.m.
Last modified Sept. 11, 2012, at 11:25 p.m.
This is the gravestone of Joseph Houlton, who founded the town bearing his name in 1807. The marker was stolen between Sept. 4 and Sept. 7. The marker weighs 70 pounds. Police have no suspects.
Houlton Police Department
This is the gravestone of Joseph Houlton, who founded the town bearing his name in 1807. The marker was stolen between Sept. 4 and Sept. 7. The marker weighs 70 pounds. Police have no suspects.

HOULTON, Maine — Police are seeking the public’s help to locate the grave marker of the town’s founder, which was apparently stolen from a local cemetery.

Houlton Police Chief Butch Asselin said Tuesday evening that police believe the 70-pound grave marker was stolen between Sept. 4 and Sept. 6.

The tombstone was taken from Evergreen Cemetery and was discovered missing by cemetery maintenance employees on the morning of Sept. 6.

The stone is 4 feet tall, 2 feet wide and 3 inches thick. It is made of white marble.

“Joseph Houlton is the founder of the town of Houlton and the theft of the stone represents a great loss for the community,” Asselin said Tuesday evening.

Replacement of the stone is estimated to be in the range of $1,000.

Police indicated the perpetrator or perpetrators involved committed the offenses of interference with a cemetery burial ground and theft by unauthorized taking or transfer. Both offenses are Class D crimes.

Officer Stewart Kennedy is investigating the crime. Police have no suspects at this time.

“The gravestone has no value to the individuals who removed it, but it certainly does to the residents of this community,” said the chief.

Police are asking that anyone with information contact the Houlton Police Department by calling 532-2287. People who remain anonymous may call 694-3545 and leave a voice or text message.

To leave a voice message for the cemetery superintendent, call 532-1329.

To place a direct call to the cemetery superintendent, call 532-1320.

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