2016-10-20 / Front Page

Vandalism still rampant

810-452-2652 • lrocha@mihomepaper.com

SWARTZ CREEK – Vandals continue to wreak havoc in the city of Swartz Creek, and some residents say they’re getting fed up.

The rash of destruction started in the early in the year when residents in Winchester Village began finding their vehicle tires slashed and windows smashed.

Obscenities, vulgar images and racial symbols have been painted on streets, sidewalks and cars.

In one recent incident, a resident in the 7300 block of West Bristol Road told police someone used a hammer or other blunt object to smash the windows of a Cadillac that was parked in the driveway. The damage occurred late Saturday or early Sunday.

“The type of damage that’s occurring varies,” said Swartz Creek Police Lt. Matt Bade. “They’re slashing tires, they’re apparently stomping on car hoods and roofs. In some cases, you wonder how no one heard anything.”

Bade said there is no pattern that would help police track down the vandals.

“They’re very random,” he said.

At a recent Parks and Recreation Advisory Board meeting, Winchester Village resident Jim Barclay commented on the vandalism that has occurred in his neighborhood. Other residents chimed in, saying it’s happening in Springbrook and in the subdivision across from Elms Park.

Barclay, who is the administrator for the Winchester Village page on Facebook, is attempting to organize a Neighborhood Watch group in the village. The first meeting, held on a rainy night at Winshall Park, attracted about a dozen residents who discussed such options as increasing public awareness and installing warning signs in target areas.

Deb Cheney was one of the residents who attended the meeting.

“I was shocked to see all the Facebook posts all summer,” said Cheney.

She said vandals have tried to break into the gas tank of her vehicle, dented the bumper and thrown a bar bell at the tail light.

Barclay said other people have found swastikas painted on their cars.

Police have urged residents to keep their outside lights on at night to discourage trespassers, and to report any suspicious activity, especially things that are happening in the late night or early morning hours.

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