Teenager Arrested for Cutting an Arm Off a Cactus in Scottsdale

Categories: Crime Blotter
saguaro-np-top.jpg
Jörn Napp
Saguaros in Saguaro National Park near Tucson.


Cacti are taken very seriously in Arizona.

Scottsdale police arrested a 16-year-old Gilbert boy yesterday for cutting the arm off a cactus in Pinnacle Peak Park.

According to Scottsdale police, park staff reported seeing a young man with some sort of large knife and machete hiking up a trail in the park, and not long after that, other hikers reported seeing the saguaro with a large arm cut off.

"Upon inspection of the damage, the officer noted that about 12" of the flowering tip of the arm had been cut with a sharp edged weapon," police say in a statement.

Police arrived at the park, and waited for the person with the knife to come back down. Robert M. McClure, a 16-year-old from Gilbert, was the person who came down the trail with the knife, according to police, and he was arrested.

State law protects certain plants, including the saguaro:
Except as provided in this chapter, it is unlawful for a person to destroy, dig up, mutilate, collect, cut, harvest or take any living highly safeguarded native plant or the living parts of any highly safeguarded native plant, including seeds or fruit, or any other living protected native plant or the living parts of any other protected plant, except seeds or fruit, from state land or public land without obtaining any required permit, tags, seals or receipts from the department, or from private land without obtaining written permission from the landowner, and any required permit, tags, seals or receipts from the department. It is unlawful for a person to falsify any paper or document issued to give permission for a person to take native plants of the protected group or to take more protected native plants than authorized by the permit or to take protected native plants from areas other than authorized by the permit.
The boy was released to his mother, but faces a felony criminal-damage charge, according to Scottsdale police.

Police say the 150-year-old saguaro is valued at $10,000.

Got a tip? Send it to: Matthew Hendley.

Follow Valley Fever on Twitter at @ValleyFeverPHX.
Follow Matthew Hendley at @MatthewHendley.




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86 comments
bareeder_27
bareeder_27

It would've been cooler if he cut the arm off a bear or something? stupid reason to get arrested haha... imagine the conversation with his bunkmate if he went to the big house. "So what you in for?" "Uhhh cuttin the arm off a cactus... what about you?" "Just rape and prison rape."

Ten Bears
Ten Bears

like anothher cactus wont grow ever again? Send him up for sexual assault and harrassment

Maggie Romero
Maggie Romero

Scottsdale teenagers should get jobs too. Responsibility & values are not taught out on the streets. Parent your kids!!!!!

Chad Riekena
Chad Riekena

Time to delete you New Times, as you clearly do nothing but repost old stories. You used to be a good paper.

Sergio Villanueva
Sergio Villanueva

Better that than another Caucasian kid gone bad with a gun story ...

fishingblues
fishingblues topcommenter

No doubt a snot-nosed liberal who believed he was "entitled".  

Jukes
Jukes

He should have to do his time with the Park Service.  Maybe learn some respect.

Mike Penn
Mike Penn

Never met a Catci I didn't like.

Richard Zimmerman
Richard Zimmerman

Little punk should get his ass beat for destroying our beautiful Cacti.

Jimmy Smith
Jimmy Smith

That's a definite no-no. Dumb teenager.

Kevin Moyers
Kevin Moyers

Always have to love guys like Phillip. Man enough to challenge anonymous people through the internet. If any of us got near you in person, you'd run crying to your mommy. Grow a pair, douchebag, and I don't mean the truck nuts hanging off the back of your tricycle.

Everett Almond
Everett Almond

P.S. WREN ? ---They only Move in after the Wood Pecker makes the Hole. Then the (BIRDS ) Pass the INFECTION that Kills the Cactus ! ---

Everett Almond
Everett Almond

No, But Close enough. To want to see the Cactus Grow Large and Majestic as they are in the Desert coming up from California.. ---Use to work in a whole sale Market in San Bruno. --Strange none of the Supplier's Know about it here. --Guess it is Making Work for the Gardeners -----Shame . --------

Steve Costa
Steve Costa

The sad part is in Arizona the cacti are more protected then the people.

Phillip Toledo
Phillip Toledo

Lol no gallons here. Is that why u sport that beard to catch the gallons of cum. Or is that there to protect your glass jaw.

Kevin Moyers
Kevin Moyers

I'll take a garbage can girl over all the guys that cum in your face pussy. Gallons and gallons of cum. Gaaaalloooons.

Phillip Toledo
Phillip Toledo

You actually get women with that mug. They must come from a garbage can

Kevin Moyers
Kevin Moyers

Are you offering to blow me, Phillip? That's nice of you, but I prefer women.

Kevin Moyers
Kevin Moyers

And Phillip, what is a face pussy? Is that what most guys call your mouth?

Kevin Moyers
Kevin Moyers

Wow, Phillip is a dumb shit. They're on the endangered plants list. That's how.

Phillip Toledo
Phillip Toledo

Michael Mc McKee come call me dipshit to my face pussy. Please explain how they are endangered genius.

Alex Perez
Alex Perez

Lmaaaoo! I could see it already "what u in here for?"

Gary Trayler
Gary Trayler

He and his parents should be held accountable.

David Borquez
David Borquez

You a native to AZ? Heard of the Cactus Wren?? State Bird?

David Borquez
David Borquez

There were many many more a few decades ago!

Ken Perry
Ken Perry

Yeah different issues that need to be addressed now and this stuff later!

Ken Perry
Ken Perry

Felony!? But what did that Mothers car polish guy get charged with for driving that Scottsdale PD car around with lights and siren on? Guess they didnt even care about that.

Kevin Buck
Kevin Buck

Push the little punk into a cholla

Rachel Amanda
Rachel Amanda

Omg I saw this cactus yesterday and was shocked!!! You could clearly see it was sliced. So sad

Phillip Toledo
Phillip Toledo

Yeah all the way to ny and back. A few times. There's plenty here in AZ this is where they live.

Ĵames Crocker
Ĵames Crocker

Have you taken a road trip anywhere outside of Arizona? Saguaros=very endangered.

Jukes
Jukes

It's not weird.  Our Sonoran Desert is the ONLY PLACE ON EARTH where saguaros are found.  They are a precious natural resource that needs to be protected.  It takes a saguaro more than 75 years to grow ONE arm.  A cactus with multiple arms may be something that took 150 years to develop.  And this numbskull kills them for fun?

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