News Release

Case Closed - North Carolina man pleads guilty to vandalizing Cape Hatteras Lighthouse door

Closeup view of letters on Cape Hatteras Lighthouse door.
Closeup view of letters etched on Cape Hatteras Lighthouse door.

NPS Photo

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News Release Date: July 23, 2019

Contact: Mike Barber, 252-475-9032

On July 8, 2019, Jamie Lester Underwood, 39, of Winston-Salem, North Carolina appeared in federal court before Chief United States District Judge Terrence W. Boyle in Elizabeth City, North Carolina. At his appearance in court, Jamie Underwood pleaded guilty to vandalizing the original bronze door of the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse and was ordered to pay $1,922 in restitution for repairs and was placed on one year of probation.

Cape Hatteras National Seashore asked for help solving this crime through a Facebook post on June 13, 2018. Shortly after the Facebook post was published, a tip was received that helped National Park Service Rangers focus their efforts on Jamie Underwood. During his visit to Cape Hatteras National Seashore last year, Underwood used a pocket knife to etch the letters “SEF” into the lighthouse’s original bronze door.
Closeup view of the letters etched on the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse door.

Earlier this year, a conservator treated the affected area of the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse door. The original bronze door was in-painted with heavy body acrylic paint until a more permanent fix could be made. The conservator will return next month to complete the door treatment.
Conservator Curtis Sullivan applying heavy body acrylic paint to the original bronze door.

The Cape Hatteras Lighthouse, completed in 1870, is a National Historic Landmark.

Last updated: July 23, 2019

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Cape Hatteras National Seashore
1401 National Park Drive

Manteo , NC 27954


252 473-2111

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