Police Investigate Rash of Tire Slashings

By: Sarah Batista
By: Sarah Batista

December 21, 2005

A series of overnight tire slashings in Charlottesville has both Police and residents baffled. So far, at least nine vandalisms have been reported along High Street, and now Charlottesville police are speaking to residents nearby hoping for any clues.

Residents say they were shocked when they walked outside this morning to find their tires completely flattened. It happened to several cars along the street, and now they say they want answers.

It was during his usual drive into work along High Street that Brian Smith first noticed something wasn't quite right. What caught his eye were several cars parked on the right-hand side.

"Probably close to 25 to 30 percent of the cars all had flight tires, some of them both tires on the street side were totally flat or down to the rims," said Brian Smith.

In all, police say about nine cars were hit just before 3 a.m. Owners stranded before work this morning. Police say this sort of thing happens a few times a year.

"Someone will just, for whatever reason, get in their mind they want to do something...we get windows shot out with bb guns or pellet guns and tires slashed," said Lt. Gary Pleasants of the Charlottesville Police.

Some cars had only one or two tires slashed. One car had all four tires slashed. The driver had it towed to the tire shop for new tires. She was so frustrated that she wouldn't talk on camera, but said it wasn't exactly the Christmas present she had hoped for.

"Twenty-three tires were cut, and a value of about $100 a piece so over a couple thousand dollars worth of damage," said Pleasants.

Smith's car wasn't there last night, but like everyone else he can't help but wonder why.

"How could that happen during Christmas time when everybody is supposed to be thinking of everybody else," said Smith.

Police don't have any suspects. If you know anything about this case, call Crimestoppers at 434-977-4000.

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