California ‘artist’ pleads guilty to vandalism in Utah national parks

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SALT LAKE CITY -- A California woman whose "art project" included the vandalism of Canyonlands and Zion National Park has pleaded guilty to federal misdemeanor charges.

The U.S. Attorney's Office for Utah said Monday night that Casey Nocket, 23, pleaded guilty in a federal court in Fresno, California, to seven misdemeanor counts of damaging government property. She was sentenced to two years probation and 200 hours of community service.

Nocket was also banned from public lands administered by the National Parks Service, U.S. Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management and Army Corps of Engineers during her probation. She will also be fined, but an amount had not been determined by the judge.

Nocket admitted in court to damaging rock formations within seven national parks during a 26-day spree where she posted "CreepyTings," drawings on rocks with markers and acrylic paints back in 2014. She posted her exploits on social media accounts, federal prosecutors said.

The vandalism includes:

  • September 23, 2014, Death Valley National Park in the Eastern District of California at the summit of Telescope Peak.
  • September 12, 2014, Rocky Mountain National Park in the District of Colorado.
  • September 13, 2014, Colorado National Monument in the District of Colorado on the Monument Canyon Trail.
  • September 15, 2014, Canyonlands National Park in the District of Utah on the Neck Spring Trail.
  • September 17, 2014, Zion National Park in the District of Utah.
  • October 2, 2014, Yosemite National Park in the Eastern District of California at the beginning of the John Muir Trail.
  • October 7, 2014, Crater Lake National Park in the District of Oregon.

"The defendant's defacement of multiple rock formations showed a lack of respect for the law and our shared national treasures," said acting U.S. Attorney Phillip Talbert of the Eastern District of California, in a statement. "The National Park Service has worked hard to restore the rock formations to their natural state, completing clean-up efforts in five of the seven parks."

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