Christopher Columbus statue returns to Yonkers Park

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YONKERS -

Crews have replaced a statue of Christopher Columbus that was vandalized at a Yonkers park in late August.

The 2-foot gold bust of Columbus is now back at Columbus Park after the statue was smashed with a bat. Emanuel Santiago Batista, 27, of Yonkers, was charged with felony criminal mischief for the act.

The monument has been vandalized at least twice before and the original bronze statue was stolen 12 years ago.

Some in the community say that Columbus was a greedy invader who shouldn't be glorified. But others are glad that the statue is back.

"It's a nice monument, it's been here since 90 years ago," said veteran, Sam Riti. "We had our first parade here, it's something that needs to be remembered."

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