Man charged with stealing bat from Ken Griffey Jr. statue in Seattle

By Alex Butler  |  Oct. 19, 2017 at 1:49 PM
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Oct. 19 (UPI) -- A man has been charged with a felony after, police say, he stole a bat from Ken Griffey Jr.'s statue in Seattle outside of Safeco Field.

Police told ESPN that the thief stole the bat from the statue at about 5 p.m. on Tuesday. The Seattle Police Department told ESPN that the bat was recovered and the man was charged with malicious mischief.

Griffey's swinging statue debuted in April. The 22-year MLB veteran was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2016.

KOMO News reported that Skyler Kaizuka is the suspect charged in the case. KING-TV reported that Kelsey Klevenberg was in a nearby office when he saw a man break off the bat. Klevenburg said he chased the man down and saw him put the bat in a garbage can.

"If there's one thing you don't do in Seattle, Washington it's mess with the statue of Ken Griffey, Jr., the savior of baseball," Klevenberg told KING-TV.

The suspect was booked into King County Jail on $10,000 bail.

The Mariners said the broken bat has been returned.

"He [artist Lou Cella] still has all the molds for everything," Mariners director of public information Rebecca Hale said, according to MLB.com. "So if necessary, they can cast a new bat, and he knows of a foundry in the Seattle area he feels comfortable with actually doing the repair work. The statue was cast with several pieces and welded together, so it's very likely this repair can be made fairly seamlessly."

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