Vandals spray mailboxes, street signs in Westminster with blue paint

April 18, 1997|By Mike Farabaugh | Mike Farabaugh,SUN STAFF

Vandals painted the town blue Wednesday, leaving Westminster police perplexed.

Reports that about a dozen mailboxes and road signs had been sprayed with blue paint from Village of the Greens to Western Maryland College were called into police headquarters between 9 a.m. and 11 a.m., Lt. Dean Brewer, a police spokesman, said yesterday.

Since April 1, Westminster police have investigated about 20 cases of vandalism, including malicious destruction of property, intentional damage to vehicles and thefts from unlocked cars.

"Typically, we will receive a call telling us that someone was overheard bragging about an incident, be it spray painting, malicious destruction or thefts from unlocked cars," Brewer said. "It takes a bit of luck to catch suspects [in such crimes], unless you happen to be there and see them do it."

Damage from Wednesday's spree cost an estimated $600, and the victims included residents on Uniontown Road, the State Highway Administration, the city of Westminster, C&P Telephone of Philadelphia and Western Maryland College, where a building was defaced.

Police say many of the incidents occurred during the day.

One woman, who lives on East Green Street, reported damage to her vehicle while it was parked in her carport during the morning of April 11.

Also in daylight, someone stole a taillight assembly from a vehicle that was parked at 140 Village Shopping Center on April 6.

"Crimes at shopping center parking lots are not unusual," Brewer said. "Many involve scratching paint."

Vandalism and thefts in the parking lot at Cranberry Mall have prompted the installation of security cameras on the roof.

Sherrie Little, Cranberry Mall's marketing director, and Aaron Coleman, its security director, said yesterday that the cameras will enable security officers to monitor front and rear lots from different angles.

Pub Date: 4/18/97

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