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Central California District
Release Date: 11/06/12
Contacts: David Christy , 916-941-3146  
News Release No. CA-CC-13-10

BLM Offers Reward in Archaeological/Ceremonial Site Destruction

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Bishop Field Office is offering a $1,000 reward for information leading to the arrest/conviction of the responsible individuals who damaged petroglyph panels at a major rock art site on the Volcanic Tableland north of Bishop.  The perpetrators removed or damaged rock art at five locations within the site.

“The individuals who did this have destroyed an irreplaceable part of our national cultural heritage,” said Bernadette Lovato, BLM Bishop Field Office Manager.  “We have increased surveillance of our sites and are working with other agencies to bring the responsible parties to justice and to recover the petroglyphs.”

Greg Haverstock, Bishop Field Office Archaeologist, said “the damaged site is a pristine example of Great Basin rock art and hunter-gatherer domestic, religious and subsistence activities.  The location of archaeological materials, feature remains, and the rock art clearly portray the activities that occurred at the site during the past 3,500 years.”

The site is protected under the Archaeological Resources Protection Act and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.  This site is one of the most significant rock art sites in the region and is still used by the local Paiute for ceremony.

ARPA violations can be prosecuted as felonies and first-time offenders can be fined up to $20,000 and imprisoned for up to one year. Second time felony offenders can be fined up to $100,000 and imprisoned for up to 5 years.  In addition, Section 7 of ARPA enables federal or Indian authorities to prosecute violators using civil fines, either in conjunction with or independent of any criminal prosecution.  Section 8 (b) of the statute allows the court or civil authority to use forfeiture of vehicles and equipment used in the violation of the statute as another means of punishment against convicted violators.

Anyone with information can contact Melody Stehwien at (760) 937-0301.

Reward flyer (PDF file)


Central California District   5152 Hillsdale Circle      El Dorado Hills, CA 95762  

Last updated: 11-15-2012