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Police: Teen Charged In Far Rockaway Playground Vandalism

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Vandals caused $100,000 worth of damage at a Far Rockaway playground (credit: Handout/Parks Department)

Vandals caused $100,000 worth of damage at a Far Rockaway playground (credit: Handout/Parks Department)

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Police say a 17-year-old has been arrested in connection with the vandalism of a Queens playground last week.

Allan Swafford has been charged with unauthorized use of a vehicle, criminal mischief and burglary. Police say he was at the controls of a stolen excavator that was used to wreck a brand new playground in Far Rockaway.

PHOTOS: Far Rockaway Playground Vandalized

Police say the March 20 vandalism spree caused more than $100,000 in damage. Investigators say Swafford plowed the excavator through the fence and then smashed the big toys.

No security guard was on duty at the time of the incident.

The new play space was just weeks away from opening to neighborhood children.

Community board district manager Jonathan Gaska said the damage has pushed back the grand opening of the playground at least a couple of months.

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