Cops Arrest Alleged Tree Bully
Ken Frisch, a San Francisco resident, was arrested around 10:30 a.m. Wednesday after officers reportedly witnessed him damaging trees in the park, according to police. Frisch was cited for a mouthful of crimes: malicious destruction of property, removal of a tree, wood or flowers from the park, feeding squirrels and a raccoon, and unauthorized performance of labor for apparently altering a park path, said Officer Tracy Turner.
However, the city's Rec and Park Department isn't so sure this is the same guy who went on a rampage, tearing up trees in the park.
"There are documented reports of this individual harassing city gardeners for some time now, however, we do not believe this is the same individual responsible for the recent rash of tree vandalism in the park," Elton Pon, spokesman for Rec and Park, told us yesterday. "Those investigations are still ongoing."
In June, Golden Gate Park officials offered up a $1,000 reward to anyone who could help them nab the person or people who had damaged some 200 young trees in the park. The damages have cost the city roughly $50,000.
The harmed trees were located in the western end of the park, and left to fend for themselves. Removal has become the only solution, as damage to treetops heightens a tree's exposure to disease and rot. This part of Golden Gate Park is currently undergoing reforestation, and is marked to alert the public.
In any event, if you see someone picking on trees in the park, call the cops.