Gravesite theft leads to felony arrest

A decorative glass gazing ball stolen from the gravesite of a U.S. Air Force Airman, Logan Norwood, has been returned followed by the arrest of a Wausau woman.

On Monday, July 2nd, Washington County Sheriff’s Office received a call from a woman reporting the possible theft of a decorative ornament from the gravesite of her son.  When deputies met with the mother, Ms. Newman, she explained that she had purchased the decorative piece as a birthday gift for her son and placed it at the site in his memory, but as she visited on Sunday she noticed it was missing.

Wanda Elaine Gadea

After returning home, Ms. Newman turned to social media, which led to the investigation and arrest of 54-year-old Wanda Elaine Gadea.

Gadea told the WCSO deputy that she had taken the glass ball from the grave, however, she had planned on returning it but was delayed due to being arrested on an unrelated warrant.

Gadea was taken into custody and booked into the Washington County Jail on the charge of removing a tomb or monument, which is a third-degree felony.

“The care and concern Washington County citizens have for each other is overwhelming, says Sheriff Kevin Crews.  “A social media post, which was shared hundreds of times, led to this family receiving the peace they deserve.  We are very fortunate for the community we live in.”

If you have any knowledge of crimes being committed, or tips, please contact the Washington County Sheriff’s Office at 850-638-6111.  You may also contact them anonymously by calling 850-638-TIPS (8477) or by email at tips@wcso.us.