North Bay hardware store's holiday display vandalized, nativity scene damaged

"Very sad somebody wanted to deface something so joyful, we're just trying to make the community happy," said an employee.

ByCornell Barnard via KGO logo
Saturday, November 5, 2022
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Holiday decorations at Sebastopol Hardware Center were left vandalized, as they were slashed and spray-painted with anarchy symbols.

SEBASTOPOL, Calif. (KGO) -- It's not even Thanksgiving but a vandal is suspected of taking all the air out of the holidays in one North Bay Community. Giant inflatables were slashed and spray-painted outside a local hardware store, a nativity scene was damaged too.

For the last six years, Sebastopol Hardware Center has been serving up Christmas with all the sparkle, in their holiday market tent.

"I come here and say, oh I can't wait to see what they have because they have great stuff here," said Bayne Cassidy.

"It's an exciting time for us, and for the community, obviously someone didn't feel that way," said store general manager Dan Allingham.

Allingham says early Sunday morning, eight giant holiday inflatables outside the tent were vandalized.

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The figures were slashed and spray-painted with anarchy symbols and pentagrams.

Vandals also took black paint to the store's nativity scene. Most of the paint was removed.

"I got the call from my assistant manager, I was shocked, you're kidding right? I drove down, amazed someone would go through and do that," Allingham added.

Allingham says store security cameras caught a possible suspect walking around the tent before dawn holding what appeared to be garden shears.

Employee Dora Avilla has been trying not to ruin the happy vibe, despite what happened.

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"Very sad somebody wanted to deface something so joyful, we're just trying to make the community happy," said Avila.

"The inflatables are a total loss," said Allingham.

Allingham says police are investigating, reviewing surveillance video.

For now, he says a new display will go up soon to replace the fallen holiday heroes.

"Our whole point, we're not going to let someone like that deter our holiday cheer, we're going to continue doing what we do and we're not going to let someone spoil that," Allingham added.

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