September 21, 2009

Police help repair Barrel Dinosaur

Police in North Carolina looking into reported vandalism of a sculpture said the suspects, including an off-duty officer, were actually repairing the item.

The Barrel Dinosaur at the SPARKcon festival in Raleigh, N.C., is the work of Joseph Carnevale, who was sentenced to community service for taking orange barrels from a construction site and turning them into a piece called the Barrel Monster. He created the Barrel Dinosaur for the city festival, where he is serving his community service hours -- and the statue needed repair after it found early Sunday to have been knocked down, The (Raleigh) News & Observer reported Monday.

An off-duty police officer and other passersby attempted to repair the damage to the sculpture but authorities said a witness mistakenly believed the group was vandalizing the Barrel Dinosaur and called police.

Police said officers responded to the call and sorted out the confusion with the off-duty officer, who was working security for the festival. The off-duty officer and volunteers managed to re-erect the sculpture with only minor damage that included missing claws and a few dents.