Zion park rangers seek information about Watchman Campground theft

The Watchman Campground, Zion National Park, Jan. 14, 2019 | Photo by Mikayla Shoup, St. George News

ST. GEORGE— Zion National Park rangers are seeking information about a theft that took place at the Watchman Campground in January.

Around 2 a.m. Jan. 25, Watchman Campground security cameras captured footage of a man entering the campground, damaging a light that was illuminating the area and taking funds from the campground’s fee drop box, Deputy Chief Ranger Andrew Fitzgerald told St. George News.

It is unknown how much money was stolen since the theft took place during the government shutdown and the park was unable to collect fees or track the number of visitors staying at the campground. Nevertheless, many campers continued to place registration envelopes and payments into the fee drop box.

Payments for the campground can be made via cash or check or by writing credit card information on the registration envelope, meaning that both money and personal credit card information may have been stolen.

We have no evidence that credit card information was stolen, but that is one of the reasons we are reaching out,” Fitzgerald said. “If anyone that had stayed in Zion during that time had experienced credit card fraud we are hoping to hear from them.”

The suspect is described as being a white male, around 6 feet 2 inches tall and about 200 pounds with a shaved or bald head. The vehicle he was driving was a white pickup truck with an open bed and a California license plate, according to a press release from the park.  

Zion park rangers, along with the National Park Service Investigative Services Branch, are investigating the incident and ask that anyone who may have seen the suspect or his vehicle on or around Jan. 25, or noticed unrecognized transactions on a credit card that they used to pay camping fees with, to contact the Investigative Services Branch.

You don’t have to tell us who you are, but please tell us what you know,” park officials stated in the press release.

Surveillance footage is not being released at this time, as investigators are hoping to obtain corroborating evidence and do not wish to influence the memories of anyone who witnessed the event.

Anyone with information about the event can contact the Investigative Services Branch by calling or texting the tip line at 888-653-0009, emailing [email protected] or reporting it online.

Email: [email protected]

Twitter: @STGnews | @MikaylaShoup

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2019, all rights reserved.

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