West Seattle Crime Watch: Grinchy vandalism

Just out of the WSB inbox from Sara:

Some very dear friends in the 10800 block of 31st Ave SW [map] have had their Christmas lights cut twice in the last four days. They have reported each incident to the police. The disturbing thing is that the lights weren’t just cut one or two times. The first time they were cut in over 30 different places, making it impossible to splice them back together. And whoever is doing this is coming far onto the property and right up to the house in order to do it. Also, the lights were cut today during the day after my friends left for work and before they came home this afternoon. Pretty malicious if you ask me.

If anyone knows who is behind this we ask that you please let the Seattle Police know. Thanks!

22 Replies to "West Seattle Crime Watch: Grinchy vandalism"

  • OP December 9, 2008 (4:45 pm)

    30 times? Hmm, that doesn’t reason out to be a random act of vandalism. Methinks somebody doesn’t really like her friends all that much. I hope they find the Grinch.

  • mike December 9, 2008 (5:37 pm)

    are these like solar flares for lights? Not justifying at all but geez that’s weird.

  • miles December 9, 2008 (6:16 pm)

    I find it very disturbing that these readers seem to “justify” crime that doesn’t seem “logical.” Does it make you, the reader feel better about it if the person doing the crime really, really doesn’t like the victim as opposed to a truly random act???

    Or you who maybe thinks Christmas lights are warning lights for aliens and not needed.

    Both comments ‘blame” the victim with the first comment and then arrogantly sympathizes with the victim with the second.

    I’d love to hear your analytical take on when my house got broken into two months ago.

    No maybe I wouldn’t……

    there I go contradicting myself..

  • JimmyG December 9, 2008 (7:23 pm)

    For about 3 years our Christmas lights we ran along our fence were being cut in numerous places (over 30). We were pissed that the neighbor kids were up to this repeatedly. The lights were cut between each bulb and sometimes the bulbs were stolen.

    It was very frustrating and costly. Finally we caught them in the act in broad daylight with the power running through the lights. The suspects were cutting through our light with of all things, their TEETH!!!

    Because it was the neighborhood SQUIRRELS! We were able to take photos of the miscreant vandals chewing through the powered up cords on either side of the light bulb and then running across the street with the bulb and going into the neighbors shrubbery.

    Hard to believe I realize, but we have the photos, and our next door neighbor witnessed it too. We no longer have lights along our fence, only on the house where the squirrels can’t get to them. I always secretly hoped some hungry squirrel in the deepest of winter cut his innards up when he went to chew on his stolen “nuts”.

    So I’m just saying the crime reported above may not be as sinister as reported, as it sounds just like what we went through.

  • MAS December 9, 2008 (7:29 pm)

    Miles –

    Trying to understand why something happens isn’t the same thing as justifying it. For example, I believe crack addicts steal stuff because they need money to buy crack, and their lives are so destroyed by their habit, theft is the only way to get money. I’m certainly not justifying their theft, just making the link.

    In the case of the Christmas lights, the insight that 30 cuts sounds personal, rather than random actually might narrow down the suspect list a bit, and therefore be helpful in apprehending the miscreant.

    I find it interesting that while both posters expressed sympathy for the victim, you assume they are being arrogant, rather than accepting their statements and in one case a useful insight that might help the victim. Are you assuming that it’s impossible to be curious about the motivation of the criminal and sympathetic to the victim at the same time?

  • MargL December 9, 2008 (7:35 pm)

    I can totally see squirrels doing this! If raccoons can come into somebody’s yard and maliciously pop a kid’s rubber balls and wading pools I wouldn’t put it past a pack of grinchy squirrels to gnaw on Christmas lights! Sounds like it’s time for an ‘xmas light cam’ to catch the culprits. :-)

  • Babs December 9, 2008 (7:49 pm)

    What do I want? I WANT to see the photos, “SQUIRRELS GONE WILD!” Oh please send them and WSB please post. We all need some marlarky, fun, and JOY because the headlines are too scary!

  • WSB December 9, 2008 (7:55 pm)

    yeah, I had that same thought. would certainly post them if we get them. (and of course photos can be posted directly in our forum as well as long as you use img src tagging and have the pic already uploaded to someplace else that generates a URL, like flickr)

  • miles December 9, 2008 (9:26 pm)

    So Sara, the blog verdict is in. Even though our neck of the woods has seen a dramatic increase in crime this Fall, don’t worry about vandalism!! Squirrels did it and everyone wants pictures.

    La de da de day……

    And MAS, your definition of “useful insight” is different from mine.

    I understand your abstract opinion.

  • walkthetalk December 9, 2008 (9:39 pm)

    Miles –

    So, we’ll see you at the next Crime Prevention Council meeting at the Southwest Precinct then, I gather.


    Or, maybe you have already located your Block Watch Captain and are actively involved in engaging all of your neighbors, live and in person, in real-time crime prevention…


    If you have plans to do so, or have already done that, kudos to you!

    If not, I encourage you to direct some of your evident passion to either one of those groups. You might make a difference you know?

    Be a doer. Inspiring and motivating people by doing is a time-honored way of problem solving.

    Just a thought. I hear your frustration.

  • toddo December 10, 2008 (12:08 am)

    “Miles” scares me more than any vandal, he sounds like a raving lunatic.

  • Jerald December 10, 2008 (12:16 am)

    Squirrels destroyed strings of lights in our cherry tree when we lived in Arbor Heights. After that we just put lights around the eaves.

  • WSB December 10, 2008 (12:19 am)

    I’m pretty clear on the pictured squirrels being those who JG caught in the act. Not to detract from the OP, and I completely believe vandals are capable of such an act … in years past, we’ve had people meticulously unscrew and remove almost every bulb in certain strings along our fence, without bothering to take the string itself. This was on the arterial side so anybody could have walked up and done it, though why they’d want to, who knows.

  • miles December 10, 2008 (6:23 am)

    Sorry folks…

    I am wound a little tight these days. My house was broken into a couple months ago. In the area of these Xmas lights.

    I apoligize if my comments went over board.

    Walkthetalk’s and Toddo’s comments have really hit home.

    Time for me to lighten up and help do something about this.

  • cruiser December 10, 2008 (7:19 am)

    Welcome back Miles:)

  • miles December 10, 2008 (7:24 am)

    It’s the “raving lunatic” comment that really did it and I must say I completely agree with at least half that statement.


  • Dunno December 10, 2008 (9:04 am)

    Sounds like these furry grinches are hitting when the lights are off otherwise you would maybe find fried fur. I say lock em up!! West Seattle needs a prison for these furry bandits.
    How bout we build one on Coyote lane. I’ve had these buggers eating my plants, lunch, and even my golf bag.
    Sorry to make (lite) of this, but I highly doubt anyone is cutting the lights 30 times. Crooks and vandels don’t like to work that hard.

  • TraciH December 10, 2008 (4:03 pm)

    Just wondering if it could be a disgruntled neighbor that is maybe annoyed by the lights that might be too bright while sleeping. Just a thought. A neighbor complained one night when I left mine on all night- accidentally.
    Happy Holidays to all!!!

  • wontubemyneighbor December 10, 2008 (6:24 pm)

    I live not too far from the house in question, and while there are a lot of lights, i do not believe it is too gaudy or bright. I would however not want to be the neighbor of the Menache family…though i as a christmas light enjoyer love their display.

    I believe vandals are the problem, and it is just too bad that people feel the need to inflict their sadness and suffering upon those of us who truly enjoy the holiday.

    I won’t say Happy Holidays – I will say Merry Christmas, and have a Happy New Year…the way it was when i was a kid :)

  • Ron December 10, 2008 (10:57 pm)

    The consensus here seems to be the squirrels are the whodonits. I move that we photograph (get the mug shots) fingerprint them (do they have fingerprints?), book’em, lock em up for ten years, and of course provide number 1 nuts for them to eat, then make slippers out of their dead carcasses. If this doesn’t get the attention of animal lovers, then you aren’t paying attention.

  • d December 11, 2008 (5:43 pm)

    Ron –

    I heart animals, not fond of criminals AND you made me chuckle! Nice goin’!

    For the record, these critters have eensy-weensy pads on their itty-bitty paws. They leave teeny-tiny paw prints. ;)

    Also, for the record, a few years of urban life is probably a long life for these mischievous marauders.

  • Stephen December 12, 2008 (10:21 am)

    How cleanly are squirrels cutting through wiring? I’d expect that the wires would be a tad more mangled by squirrel teeth than a vandal using scissors or a knife (I would think that a vandal would want a fast cut as opposed to taking their sweet time with blunt objects or their teeth).

    It would be great to see some pics of the damage.

Sorry, comment time is over.