For the fourth time this year, a vandal attacked businesses near the intersection of 36th & Bryant destroying their storefront windows June 12, though police say they have a basic description of a suspect.
The vandal struck Calhoun Pet Supply, 901 W. 36th St., and Kyle’s Market, 826 W. 36th St., destroying multiple windows shortly after 4 a.m., said 5th Precinct Insp. Matt Clark.
He said the vandal also destroyed windows on cars nearby and that police have not determined why the vandal has targeted the area or businesses. The June 12 incident follows similar incidents Feb. 14, 15 and 22 at the businesses, which are owned by the same family.
“We don’t have a motive at this time and we are definitely looking into the lead that we have,” he said. Police are looking for a 6-foot-tall white male with heavy build who carried a baseball bat, he said.
Police canvassed the neighborhood to generate more details on the suspect and investigators are talking to local businesses. They have also increased patrols of the area as they did in February and added a live-feed camera to monitor the building, Clark said.
Joe Liu, a manager at Calhoun Pet Supply and son of both businesses’ owners, said the violence appears to be related to a vendetta, though Liu’s family can think of no serious past conflicts. Liu’s parents, who immigrated from China, are the only Asian business owners in their immediate area leading some to speculate that the attacks are race-related, Liu said, adding that he was less sure.
“It’s hard to say what’s going on in the guy’s head, but he looks very angry. That’s clear from the video,” Liu said of the footage from new security cameras which shows a man armed with a hammer.
Liu said the images of the man do not reveal the vandal’s race, only that the suspect is stocky and of average height, Liu said, adding police had not yet seen the footage.
“He’s covered from head to toe. He’s got a hoodie and a handkerchief on. Everything is covered except for his eyes,” he said, adding that his family hopes that someone will come forward to name the suspect.
Clark said police will speak with Liu about his description.
In previous attacks, at approximately the same time of morning, the vandal or vandals also wrote slurs against women on the building, Liu said.
He said that for now the storefront of Calhoun Pet Supply will be boarded up and the laminated glass of Kyle’s will not be replaced. The destroyed glass could be replaced later with Plexiglass to protect against a possible fifth attack, he said. Liu’s father, Fuliang “Joe” Zhou, said that so far the costs of the vandalism have reached $5,100, with his family paying $3,000 so far.
The recent damage costs have not been tallied. He said his businesses over the last 17 years treated neighbors and customers well, and had only conflicts normal to any business such as shoplifting or declined credit cards.
“What would not lead to this kind of violence, this kind of vandalization? We have no clue,” he said.