Police Hunt Instagram Couple Who Vandalised Ancient Native American Site
Humans just can't be trusted with anything even slightly important, can we? One couple have illustrated this for us all, as they drew graffiti on an ancient Native American gathering point.
The site, at Starved Rock State Park in the state of Illinois, was vandalised with a love heart containing their initials, and seems the pair were just doing it for the 'Gram.
On Monday, the man and woman scrawled their names into the wall of Council Overhang, which is based towards the east of the park.
Park Superintendent Kerry Novak told the Journal Star (via Newsweek) that someone who saw the act went to the office of the park on 2 September to report them. They said they saw the couple deface the wall at Council Overhang, then take a photo and say they were putting it on Instagram.
Novak added: "If you bring your family here, you want to see a beautiful natural area. You don't want to see this sort of thing."
The park ranger went on to search through the social platform himself to find the image.
"Art is beautiful, but it is not meant to be carved drawn, or painted on natural features at state and national parks," Starved Rock and Mathiessen State Parks said in a statement, posted to Facebook as authorities attempt to trace the couple.
The statement continued: "Don't be like John and Jane Doe pictured here who decided to paint on Council Overhang which is a 425 million year old sandstone formation at the park used for 8,000 years as a Native American gathering place.
"One of our largest problems at the park are visitors who do not respect the parks trails, exhibits, buildings, interpretive panels on trails, and the natural sandstone features.
"Please help us keep our parks and natural areas clean."
Police have not yet confirmed whether the photo in the post is authentic, although Illinois-based radio station WGLC-FM claimed that the female suspect has been identified, with police still attempting to ID the male.
It's not the first time recently that people have been disrespectful towards sacred relics for the sake of Instagram.
One Czech 'influencer' couple filmed themselves using the holy water from a Hindu temple in Bali to splash it on one of their bums.
The stunt caused outrage in Indonesia, where the spring water is used for ritual purification.
Sabina Dolezalova and her boyfriend Zdenek Slouka filmed the clip at a Hindu temple in the town of Ubud on the Indonesian island of Bali and Dolezalova posted it onto social media.
In the video, the couple can be seen standing together in front of a shrine of holy water in the temple when Slouka goes to put his hand under the running water.
His girlfriend then bends over and lifts up her skirt. Her boyfriend splashes the holy water on to her bum as she screams playfully.
The pair issued an apology but were widely criticised.
Featured Image Credit: Pixabay/Starved Rock and Mattiessen State Park