Police hunt offender after 43 cars damaged in Melbourne East
Police are searching for a man who allegedly damaged dozens of cars in Melbourne East in December.
Forty-three vehicles were damaged, dented and mirrors smashed in Powlett St, Albert St, Simpson St, and Grey St on Thursday December 15.
Investigators said it’s believed an unknown man kicked and damaged the cars between 3.30am and 4am.
“It’s obviously not what we want in our community, it seems to be a random attack on these vehicles,” First Constable Heath Wright of Melbourne East police station said.
“Residents don’t expect their vehicles to be damaged when their parked out the front of their houses in the neighbourhood.”
Police have released footage of a man they believe may be able to help with their enquiries but have urged anyone with information to also come forward.
First Const. Wright said after the vandalism spree, the offender is believed to have attended a nearby service station on Hoddle St before getting in an Uber and leaving the area.
He said it was “very unusual” to see this type of offending “especially in this volume” with damage bill expected to be a “heft amount”.
“We believe he just kicked a lot of cars. It doesn’t sound like anything was stolen at the time,” First Const. Wright said.
No weapons or implements were used in the offending, First Const. Wright said, adding the man was “purely kicking cars”.
“It didn’t seem to be a targeted attack on specific vehicles, it was just an opportunistic attack we think on all the cars in the area,” he said.
“There were no witnesses. There were a couple of calls to police in regard to the sounds that they heard…no one saw the incident.
We’ve canvassed and spoke to as many residents as we can and trying to establish if any have CCTV.
Asked if the incident was linked to similar offending in the area, First Const. Wright said police would not rule out the possibility.
“We can’t say at this stage if they are linked, but we are still investigating all those other incidents,” he said.
Investigators have fingerprinted each of the damaged cars and are awaiting the results.
The man is perceived to be Caucasian in appearance, with long dark hair, aged 30 to 35-years-old and 180cm tall.
He was wearing a beanie, an oversized khaki jumper, dark faded pants, and black shoes.
“If anyone has any knowledge of who this person is or can provide any information, we encourage them to call crime stoppers,” First Const. Wright said.
Anyone with information is urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.
Caption: CCTV images of man police believe may be able to help with their enquiries.