East Carolina University Police Department (ECU PD) arrested Efe Mert Erdem, who is allegedly responsible for the destruction of the PeeDee the Pirate statue on Oct. 3.
Erdem, a non-ECU student from Raleigh, North Carolina, was charged for damage to property on Oct. 3. ECU PD Captain Chris Sutton said in an email statement that Erdem was given a $500 secured bond.
An ECU student was also involved in the vandalism and was referred to the ECU Student Rights and Responsibility Office. Since the ECU student is a juvenile, ECU PD is not able to release the information of the individual. Sutton said alcohol impairment potentially played a part in the destruction of the statue.
“The statue has been removed and will be evaluated on repair options. This is unfortunately not the first time this iconic Pirate statute has been damaged,” Sutton said. “In the past, skilled craftsmen have been able to return the Pirate to a presentable display and returned to his post, where he watches over the ECU Mall area.”
Sutton said ECU has a beautiful campus where ECU Facilities and Services employees have worked to maintain its beauty and charm. He said it’s unfortunate and disappointing when destructive events like the PeeDee the Pirate statue incident occur.
“It isn’t just about a Pirate statute, but also about the diligence and effort groundskeepers, housekeepers, painters and many other facility staff members give to ECU daily,” Sutton said.