Adorable Pokémon have been popping up all over the place since Pokémon Go had its global release last week, prompting some sacred spaces—Arlington Cemetery, for instance, and Auschwitz, and the Holocaust Museum—to tell Pokétrainers to keep out. Now, pocket monsters and the people who seek them are invading a 176-year-old cemetery on Staten Island, and people are not happy.
Apparently Pokémon Goers broke into the borough's Moravian Cemetery twice last week, with six people breaking in Monday night and another group breaking on on Tuesday. "We are extremely concerned with children and young adults playing Pokemon Go on our property for a number of reasons," cemetery officials said in a statement. "Not only is it disrespectful to our families and their loved one's resting on our sacred grounds, the game-playing also presents a problem in that players of this game can easily get hurt."
Assemblyman Ron Castorina Jr. says his office has received a number of complaints about gamers on cemetery grounds, and is asking Niantic, which owns the game, to remove the cemetery from its platform. "I'd like them to ... remove off their maps cemeteries, houses of worship, and public property so that we don't have issues of trespass and desecration," he told the Daily News.
Nancy Burri, vice president of the cemetery, says they'll be bringing charges against anyone else who trespasses while playing Pokémon Go. "We have a great respect for those that are buried here, and for their families," she told the tabloid, adding, "Also, the cemetery is old; we have graves with tombstones that could conceivably fall over. It is not the safest place to be at night."
A safety concern indeed.