Hell yeah, make ’em pay
by Caleb Reading
A former high school football player and other teens who unleashed a torrent of vandalism on a Valley home in 2002 will be held “jointly and severally” responsible for the entire $50,000-plus cost of the damage, according to a memorandum opinion and judgment issued recently by the Alaska Court of Appeals.
“Making it joint and several means that if someone doesn’t pay, the others have to pick up the unpaid portion,”
A group of about a half-dozen boys, some of them high school football players, broke almost every window in the home, tore out a front railing, littered the interior with beer bottles, knocked a door off its hinges, and broke other doors, punched holes in the drywall and smeared honey, catsup, juice and pickles all over the walls, fixtures and carpets. Spray-painted graffiti streaked the walls, as well, and the home received water damage because someone broke the water filter.
Insurance wouldn’t pay for the damage the vandals caused because no one was living in the Foxtrot home at the time, even though most of the family’s possessions were still inside. Hoyt said the damage to the home exceeded the amount noted in the court filing, totaling nearly $77,600, not including damage to their personal property.
“We couldn’t sell it and couldn’t fix it,” Hoyt said during an interview at his Wasilla business on Thursday. “We couldn’t do anything with it, just make payments on it.”
Eventually the Hoyts found someone who would assume payments on the home; they lost the equity, however.
Hoyt says he has received somewhere around $8,000-$10,000 restitution from the youths involved – total – and that none of the teens has offered his family a sincere apology.
“They destroyed family pictures and the hope chest my wife had since she was a kid,” Hoyt said.
The Hoyts never brought their children back to that house.
“It was the only place they lived in their lives, their sanctuary, it was not a good thing for them mentally to have to deal with this,” Hoyt said. “Society has to find a better way to deal with this than a slap on the wrist and go home to mother.”