A MEMORIAL bench for a young murder victim has been removed from a Rhyl beauty spot after it was attacked by vandals.
David Hatswell was just 16 when he was stabbed to death in September, 2000, on Brickfield Pond and now the bench used by family members to remember him to him has been targeted.
David’s father Lee Hatswell, aged 47, of Rhyl, said the family was devastated and urged any witnesses to contact police.
He said: “The bench is something to honour him, somewhere to sit and think of David.
“A lady walking through the park witnessed a bunch of youths trying to pull the new bench out of the ground.
I would like to thank her for getting the park keepers.It is absolutely disgraceful, they were really going out of their way to cause damage to it.
The stunning thing is that it happened in broad daylight.”
The bench has now been removed over fears of further attacks.
Mr Hatswell, who has worked as a bereavement counsellor, said David’s brother Phillip, 27, sister Chelsey, 14, and mother June Evans were devastated.
He added: “It is so upsetting for the whole family.
“We are now looking at ideas at what can go there.”
Mr Hatswell also thanked those who had donated the bench and built it as a replacement for a previous bench which had decayed.
Family friend David Cook said: “To vandalise a memorial to someone really is the lowest of the low. It is beyond me what’s got into them.
“I was over the moon when I got this bench for Lee out of my own pocket but it’s shame it’s not worked out.”
A spokesman for Denbishire Council said: “We have been considering ways of making the bench more secure and the intention is to place the bench in concrete plinths.
“We are happy to do this on the family’s behalf and hope that it is left alone.”
Anyone with information should contact North Wales Police on 101.