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Palette art stolen in Martinsburg

June 27, 2008|By MATTHEW UMSTEAD

MARTINSBURG, W.VA. -- Police in Martinsburg are asking for the public's help in recovering two large works of art that were stolen earlier this month while on display downtown along Queen Street.

The decorative palettes were taken from the intersection of North Queen Street and Martin Street between June 8 and 12, police said.

"In kind of a weird way, it's a compliment," said Hedgesville, W.Va., area artist Katherine Zinner Cimaglio, whose work "Augie Steps Out" was stolen from the display of 31 palettes placed along sidewalks a few weeks ago.

Abigail Sandy, the artist of the other work, titled "The Sacred Heart," was upset because it was her first year participating in the downtown revitalization organization's annual project, Lewis said.

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Unveiled at the 2008 West Virginia Wine and Arts Festival in May, the palettes will remain on display through August, despite the theft, Lewis said.

"It's just one of those misfortunate things that happen," said Lewis, who hopes the crime will not ruin a project that he said has helped attract more people to downtown Martinsburg.

The palettes were zip-tied to city street light poles and mounted on easels with screws, Lewis said. The zip ties were cut on the palettes that were stolen, he said.

Cimaglio's work was deemed one of the top three works by judges on June 7.

Anyone with information on the whereabouts of the palettes or the persons who took them may contact the Martinsburg Police Department at 304-264-2100 or Berkeley County Crime Solvers at 304-267-4999.

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