Several ACU students and Abilene residents have walked outside to find their front or back windshields smashed over the past few weeks.
The incidents have been concentrated in the ACU area, according to ACU Police Department Chief of Police Jimmy Ellison.
“There have been over 50 incidents of vandalism around Abilene, and about 10 to 12 of them have been called in from the streets surrounding campus,” Ellison said.
ACUPD has joined Abilene Police Department in the investigation to catch the people using what officers speculate to be baseballs or bricks to smash windshields.
“These incidents are classified as criminal mischief, since the vehicles weren’t actually broken into,” Ellison said.
Keighly Scally, junior art education major from Euless, was one of the students whose vehicle was damaged. She said her car was parked in the street in front of her house on Aug. 13 when she found her windshield had been smashed.
“The damages happened sometime between Thursday night and Friday morning,” Scally said. “I used a local glass company to get it repaired, and it cost $300.”
Most vehicles damaged were parked in the street or at the end of a driveway. Ellison advised students to park in their garages or as near to their houses as possible to reduce the chance of their vehicles being damaged. The best way to prevent more things like this from happening, is to be vigilant and report any suspicious activity to ACUPD, Ellison said.
For example, at 3:30 a.m. Aug. 18, ACUPD and APD responded to a call concerning a car burglary from the area of Washington Boulevard and East North 13th Street. Out of the three suspects, APD and ACUPD caught two on foot by using K9 units, and the stolen property was recovered.
“This is an example of an alert resident looking out for their cars,” Ellison said. “Seeing someone suspicious does no good if nothing is reported.”