Ancient petroglyphs at Picture Rocks, a Hohokam Indian site northwest of Tuscon, have been damaged by vandals over the last three years, the Arizona Star reports.
“People have been seen vandalizing petroglyphs. There has been some damage – defacing of the rocks,” said the site’s assistant director, Peter Tran. The damages also include added graffiti and modern drawings meant to resemble the ancient pictures. “The recently added designs and graffiti can be seen from some distance away, which greatly detracts from the overall view and contextual integrity of the prehistoric rock symbols,” Tran said. “Vandalism incidents at Picture Rocks and other petroglyph and pictograph sites also cause problems for native peoples, anthropologists and art historians who study rock art and its archaeological context.”
Picture Rocks is currently open free to the public. Warning signs have been recently posted threatening prosecution for vandals.