Headstones toppled at second Philly cemetery not vandalism, police say


(JTA) — Thirty headstones toppled in a Jewish cemetery in the Philadelphia area fell due to age and environmental factors, police said.

The damaged headstones were discovered on Friday at Mt. Sharon Cemetery in Springfield, Pennsylvania. It was reported by a woman who went to visit her father’s grave and noticed the overturned and cracked headstones.

The damage was initially reported as vandalism, which caused concern in light of the vandalism in February at the Mount Carmel Cemetery, where about 175 gravestones were toppled in a vandalism attack, just after a Jewish cemetery in St. Louis was vandalized. No suspects have been identified in either attack.

Police said Saturday that the damage was not vandalism, but was caused by external factors, including recent bush and tree removal.  The cemetery management said it would fix the toppled headstones, police told local media.