Friday, September 25, 2009

Your Tax Dollars at Work

Man charged with golf ball littering

PALM SPRINGS, Calif., Sept. 20 (UPI) -- A California man has been charged with tossing thousands of golf balls out his car window in Joshua Tree National Park.

Douglas Jones, 57, of La Quinta was given a summons by park rangers in August, The Palm Springs Desert Sun reported. Rangers say he not only threw the golf balls out into the desert but tossed some tennis balls as well and left cans of food in the park.

Jones has a hearing before a federal magistrate scheduled for next month.

Joe Zarki, a spokesman for the national monument, said rangers have spent hundreds of hours cleaning up after Jones.

"It wasn't daily, but frequent enough that rangers were aware of it and keying into looking for this individual," he said. "It was a time-consuming and fairly expensive issue for us."

Rangers said they finally caught Jones in the act. He allegedly admitted his extensive littering, describing the golf balls as memorials to dead golfers and the food as emergency provisions for stranded hikers.

Original photograph of Barker Dam, Joshua Tree, tinting and photo-manipulation ©Barry Shapiro

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