Thursday, June 30, 2005

Attack of the Squicky Vandals

As I returned to the trail parking lot at the end of the Eliza Furnace Trail (There was rain predicted so I parked there instead of in Squirrel Hill), I was approached by another bicycle commuter. He asked if I too had been slimed. He was referring to occasions when I, and now clearly others, had automotive grease placed under their door handles.

The prime suspect is the owner of the adjacent Childrens Hospital parking lot. He apparently wanted ownership of the parking lot now owned by the city and provided free for trail users and when he didn't get it he began a campaign of petty vandalism in an effort to drive people away. I guess he figured that if he could drive people away he could claim that the space was under utilized and thus claim ownership because his neighboring lot is often full to capacity. It must gaul him to see those empty spaces that he could be making money off of.

The way he was caught (though there isn't any proof about the sliming) is that he left a note on someone's windshield saying that they couldn't park there all day and that his car would be towed. He signed the letter "Property Owner" and the phone number was that of the neighboring lot's owner.

The police have spoken with this guy and apparently the vandalism has ceased. . . for the moment. I have no doubt that he will attempt some other tactic to get what he thinks should be his. "Why should my taxes go to pay for an parking lot for bicyclists when I could be making money off of each space?"

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