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Indiana Statehouse vandalized; 4 juveniles taken into custody

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Pictures sent to News 8 show a break-in and vandalism at the Indiana Statehouse, and staff members wonder how four juveniles entered the building on a day it was closed.

News 8 received pictures showing a broken bench, broken glass in the Rotunda, and what looks like a vandalized office. The building is the home to all of Indiana’s statewide elected offices. People who use the building were tight-lipped Monday about what happened.

We’re told both the House and Senate chambers were vandalized.

Indiana State Capitol Police found four juveniles in the building around 4 p.m. Sunday and began to chase the kids. The kids were caught outside the building near the downtown canal. Three girls and a boy were taken into custody before being released to their parents. Police say their ages are 13 and 14.

Police were investigating how the juveniles got into the building, which has surveillance cameras.

The House speaker released a statement.

“We learned of the damages made by multiple juveniles to the House Chamber on Sunday evening. Our initial assessment is that the damage in the chamber ranges from broken monitors to desktop items being trashed. At this time, we’re not aware of any damage to historically significant items, and other House offices were not impacted. We continue to gather information and assess the situation. Just as Hoosiers do, we take great pride in this historical and special building, and it was beyond disheartening and frustrating to learn of this incident. We’ve already begun the clean-up process, and we’ll continue working closely with the Capitol Police, governor’s office and the Indiana Department of Administration.”

Indiana House Speaker Todd Huston, a Fishers Republican

Senate Republicans and the offices of the attorney general, secretary of state, and state treasurer declined to comment on the break-in. The governor’s office and Senate Democrats did not reply to News 8’s requests for comment. Senate Democrats did not make anyone available to talk to News 8 before the newscast at 5 p.m. Monday.