Well, after about two minutes of deliberation, I radio'd the tower from a parked aircraft near the hanger. I told them the approach light system had been struck by a landing aircraft. They said thank you and I put down the headset. About 5 minutes later (maybe less), the V tailed aircraft was taxiing by and stopped short of the departing runway. I was outside the aircraft and by now there were other people aware of the situation. They asked me if that was the plane and I said yes. After a quick talk with one of my former instructors, I jumped back on the radio inside the parked aircraft and got on the ground frequency. I said that the aircraft holding short of the runway was the one that hit the lights and asked if he had stopped to check out his plane to make sure there wasn't damage. They said they figured it was this plane and they would take care of it. About a minute later, HE TOOK OFF! The maintenance SUV was behind him on the taxiway apparently checking out his plane. Once the plane took off, the SUV then drove to the "crash site" and saw the lights hanging off the pole (one side of the T was completely loose and hanging freely).
They came by to question me. I had to give them my name (which I hope won't haunt me for my life). They asked if I saw him hit the lights to which I responded with a resounding "YES". They said the pilot of the departing airplane told the tower that he did not hit the lights. Since they couldn't verify my story and had not taken the time to check the lights prior to his departure, they let him go.
As a pilot, I have one major concern in all my flights: safety. Lets forget the fact that he landed about 1000' feet short of the threshold. Lets forget about the fact that he landed on arrows pointing to the big white thick line that should ring bells for any landing pilot. People make mistakes and we all learn from them. The problem is that he HIT something while in flight (not sure if immediate notification for in flight collision plays into this or not, NTSB 830), ignored the potential damage to his aircraft and the safety of his flight, and then blatantly DENIED that he had even hit the lights when asked by the tower. At this point, I wouldn't feel bad if the FAA found him and violated him. Who knows what they would have done if he confessed in the first place. Now they have him on tape denying the collision and then taking off again. There are probably a number of violations they could make.
Call me what you will but I really did have safety in mind when I called the tower. I would hate to see anyone get violated for an honest mistake, but own up to it and take the appropriate action to conduct a safe flight. People like him are why pilots get a bad name sometimes for being reckless jerks.
LESSON OF THE DAY: The BIG WHITE THICK LINE is the start of the landing portion of the runway!