Prosecutors have upgraded the charges against a North Carolina man accused of vandalizing Clemson football landmark Howard’s Rock 19 months ago.
13th Circuit Solicitor Walt Wilkins announced Wednesday that the Pickens County Grand Jury had increased the estimated value of the damage caused by 20-year-old Micah Rogers of Pisgah Forest, North Carolina, in June 2013. Rogers is accused of damaging the protective casing around the rock and chipping off a piece of it. He was arrested two weeks after the school said the vandalism occurred.
At the time, Rogers was charged with one count each of Grand Larceny and Malicious Injury to Property valued between $2,000 and $10,000. On Wednesday, Wilkins said those charges had been upgraded to property valued above $10,000. Rogers now faces up to 10 years in prison if convicted. No trial date has been set and Rogers is currently free on bond.
Howard’s Rock is perhaps Clemson’s most famous sports tradition. Before every home game, the team will rub the rock for good luck before running into the stadium. The tradition dates back to 1967. The damaged rock still remains on a pedestal inside the stadium, although security on its pedestal has been heightened.
Two other individuals 46-year-old Michael Rogers (Rogers’ father), also of Pisgah Forest, and 17-year-old Alden Gainey of Brevard were also charged with conspiracy and obstructing justice. Those charges are still pending, according to court records. The elder Rogers has denied any role in the crime.