Police investigate vandalism in Santa Cruz

July 30, 2011 6:46:28 PM PDT
A lot of people spent their Saturday morning and afternoon changing tires and looking for a new paint job after vandals damaged 47 cars.

Vandals slashed tires on several cars and carved swastikas in about six cars. Police say the symbols carved into the cars meant they've be investigating the vandalism as a hate crime.

Police say the vandalism happened along a three-block stretch of Almar Avenue sometime between Friday evening and early Saturday morning. Residents say the cars were vandalized while on the street and parked in their driveways.

The cars on one side of the street had slashed tires; the cars on the other side of the street were keyed.

One vandalism victim said he woke up to tow trucks all over his street carrying away vandalized cars.

"Up and down the street, everywhere you looked, were flat tires," said vandalism victim Brian Murtha. "We looked at our cars and said, oh thank goodness, at least we don't have flat tires. And then someone else said, hey, check for keying...then we looked and, oh man."

Murtha said it wouldn't cost much to fix, but was troubled by the "idea that someone is imposing some kind of politics or something on the car."

Several cars were still not repaired as of Saturday evening.

Santa Cruz police say they do not have any suspects.

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