Vandals Smash 70 Headstones at Rome Cemetery

Smashed headstones lie at the Verano cemetery in Rome, Friday. (Massimo Percossi/ANSA via AP)

Vandals struck Thursday night at Rome’s largest cemetery, smashing and shattering some 70 headstones and memorial monuments.

Rome Mayor Virginia Raggi decried the rampage at Verano Cemetery as a “vile deed.” Officials said that Catholic and Jewish headstones were among the smashed monuments. Glass frames of loved ones decorating graves were shattered, and flower vases toppled.

Italian news reports said investigators suspect that a group of youths slipped into the cemetery when it was closed at night and vandalized the tombstones.