Police investigate vandalism spree in Decatur Township

Spree coincides with township's spring break

INDIANAPOLIS - Metro police have been taking vandalism reports from angry victims and their anxious neighbors across the city's southwest side.

In the sprawling Heartland Crossing subdivision, at least half a dozen residents awoke to the sight of broken glass and damaged vehicles on Wednesday.

But at Kevin Toler's house, the sound of breaking glass woke him up just after 3 Wednesday morning. Toler's home video surveillance caught the act on tape.

"I was angry this morning to sit and watch the video and know that there's nothing you can do," Toler said. "It happened so quickly… there's no way to know they're there until you hear the bangs."

Neighbor Nicole Arney heard the bangs from her upstairs bedroom. She went outside and found her window broken.

"It's sickening and very sad to find out it happened to so many other people," Arney said.

According to Metro police, the vandalism has occurred in at least half a dozen neighborhoods across the city's far southwest side. Dozens of cars have had windows broken out, and some have been spray painted with the words "west side."

"There was no reason," said neighbor Melissa Spratt, whose car was vandalized. "I mean, if they were trying to take something out of the car, at least there's a reason why they would crash it in, but they didn't take anything and they didn't even try to get in the car."

The vandalism has been carried out over the past four days. Victims have been dealing with police reports, insurance claims and auto glass companies and all of the emotional strain that comes with it.

"It's invasive. It feels like you’ve been invaded, granted, they didn't get in the vehicles or anything, but just to know that they're there," Toler said.
Police say the rash of vandalism coincides with spring break in Decatur Township schools.

Several victims have reported seeing an older model, tan Toyota Camry leaving the scene.

Because some of the vehicles have been spray painted with "west side," police have referred some of the investigation to their gang unit.

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