Charges filed in President Ford gravesite vandalism

Grand Rapids

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — The Kent County prosecutor has filed misdemeanor charges against two people accused of vandalizing the gravesite of former President Gerald R. Ford and his wife, Betty.

Christian Johnson is facing a charge of malicious destruction of tombs or memorials, causing between $200 and $1,000 in damage. Alexis Brinkert is charged with receiving and concealing stolen property worth less than $200.

The couple turned themselves in to police the day after the city released surveillance images of the suspects.

Police say on March 27, security cameras outside the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library & Museum captured two people sitting atop the gravesite. The video shows one of them trying to rip out a letter.

If convicted, Johnson faces up to a year in jail and a fine of $2,000 or three times the value of the property damaged. The maximum punishment for Brinkert is 93 days in jail and a fine of $500 or three times the value of the stolen property, whichever is greater.

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