Since 1942, the Klutts family in Rockwall has worked the 200 acres along Farm-to-Market Road 549. An approximately 140-year-old farmhouse on the property, unoccupied for years, has become a bit of a local landmark. It’s also become a draw for vandals, according to Ben Klutts of Klutts Farm.
“It’s causing a lot of undue stress for us,” Klutts said. “There’s not really anyone gaining from it.”
In several incidents in the spring, Klutts said vandals trespassed onto the working cattle farm and damaged barns, equipment and the old farmhouse.
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Most recently, early Saturday morning, Klutts said vandals pulled sheet metal siding from a barn, then kicked in the drywall. The vandals crawled into the barn and cut gas lines to four-wheelers that were stored inside.
Game cameras on the farm captured a group of five or six on the property. The family saw the camera alerts and called police, but the group scattered.
“I think right now a lot of kids are out, they’re getting bored, they don’t have a lot of things to do,” Klutts said.
Other camera images from the night before showed a similar-size group on the property. A few months ago, a group broke out the windows of a bus that was stored on the farm.
The property is fenced, there are “no trespassing” signs posted and the family has added more cameras.
Still, the destruction continues.
“Instead of working the land, we’re having to deal with the police and clean up and fix things,” Klutts said.
He said his fear is someone will get hurt – especially in the old farmhouse.
“It’s a huge fear for us because it is a two-story house. It’s old, rotted 140-year-old wood,” Klutts said. “We can see where they’re going upstairs.”
The family is asking anyone with information about the vandalism to call Rockwall police. Klutts said his family is considering hiring off-duty police to guard the property in the future.