EVANSTON — Police arrested two men Friday who they say are responsible for the destruction discovered last week at the Roundhouse.
Dominic Burgess, 18, and James E. Nordwall, 22, were arrested on suspicion of felony property destruction and felony conspiracy to commit property destruction.
Evanston Police Chief Jon Kirby said that while the case required some great police work, community members should receive a lot of credit for the role they played in solving the case.
“This one really was [about] community participation,” Kirby said. “We had to do some great police work to follow that up, but it was the community and three early tips that helped get the ball rolling.”
The three tips, Kirby said, came after Crime Stoppers of Southwest Wyoming posted a minute-long surveillance video taken in the alley behind NGL Connection around 4 a.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 30.
On the morning of Aug. 30, city employees arrived at the Roundhouse to find tens of thousands of dollars in damage after large rocks had apparently been hurled through 20 large windows and into the main room of the historic building.
A press release issued by the Evanston Police Department Thursday stated that the initial estimated damages are at least $42,000, which does not include labor for the needed repairs. Court documents indicate an estimate received from contractors last week exceeds $61,000.
Evanston Police Lt. Ken Pearson said there was a lot of evidence at the scene, some of which was sent to the Wyoming State Crime Lab in Cheyenne. While processing evidence can take several weeks, officers appeared to have enough evidence to get arrest warrants for Burgess and Nordwall.
According to court documents, Burgess and Nordwall each confessed to the Roundhouse vandalism as well as other vandalisms allegedly committed earlier that morning.
After allegedly taking shots of vodka, the two allegedly rode bikes around town, taking breaks to vandalize several areas.
According to court documents, Burgess and Nordwall rode bikes to the Bear Ice Ponds, where they tipped over the port-a-potties before riding to Bear River State Park. After leaving the park, Nordwall allegedly asked Burgess, “Hey, do you like want to go break some glass?”
The two allegedly rode to the Rice King building on Bear River Drive. The restaurant hasn’t been open for several months. According to court documents, Burgess and Nordwall threw rocks and pieces of concrete at the building, breaking one window.
As they headed toward downtown, the two allegedly stopped near a camper and broke another window.
According to court documents, Burgess and Nordwall rode their bikes down Main Street and through an alley, where police believe they were caught by a surveillance camera behind NGL Connection, and eventually to the Roundhouse and Railyards.
After allegedly throwing rocks for 30-45 minutes at an old building east of the Roundhouse, Nordwall looked over at the Roundhouse and said, “That’s a lot of fresh glass,” according to court documents.
While at the Roundhouse, Nordwall allegedly punched several windows “because it feels good.” According to court documents, the two were at the Roundhouse for 30-45 minutes before heading to Nordwall’s house.
According to court documents, a family member told investigators that Burgess and Nordwall “got drunk and decided to tear up some s---.”
If convicted of felony property destruction, Burgess and Nordwall could be sentenced to up to 10 years in prison, ordered to pay a $10,000 fine, or both.
If convicted of conspiracy to commit felony property destruction, they could receive the same penalty — up to 10 years in prison, a $10,000 fine, or both.