The large white letters that make up the name for the Westhills community in Langford were damaged over the weekend, after vandals removed and rearranged them.
Dubbed the Hollywood sign of Langford, the Westhills sign welcomes people as they enter the community. Last weekend, Westhills Land Corp say vandals rearranged the letters to spell the word, “Heist.”
“They took off the sign, created significant damage, and sort of rearranged the letters and threw some of them around the hillside,” said Robert Muller, sales and marketing director for Westhills Land Corp.
The developers aren’t sure who is responsible, but say pulling off a job like that would be difficult since the letters are over three metres (10 feet) in size and are anchored into large slabs of concrete.
“We feel it was either a significant amount of people, or somebody with access to a pretty good set of tools,” said Muller.
Developers say it cost $30,000 to install the letters when the community was first built, and replacing the letters that are damaged will cost half of that.
“We love a great prank. Unfortunately, when those prank cause significant amounts of damage – this particular event caused about $15,000 in damage. Even though it doesn’t look like an expensive sign, it really is,” said Muller.
Only the letters “EST” remain, and Muller says an order has already been placed for the new lettering, but it may take up to three weeks for them to be installed. The West Shore RCMP say they do not have any suspects at this time, but the corporation is pleading to the public, offering $2,000 for information that leads to an arrest.
“We are starting to get some tips,” said Muller.
“The sign was designed to emulate the Hollywood sign and to create a landmark that people know and welcome them to Westhills.”
It’s unclear why vandals decided on the word ,”Heist,” but Muller says they’re committed to having the sign return to its original form.
Extra security cameras are being installed to prevent anymore vandalism.