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2013-05-09 digital edition

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2013-05-09 / Front Page

Local Real Estate Office Vandalized Twice in Two Days

Last Sunday morning, May 5, at about 8 a.m., Tammy Janda went to Giddings to pick up her daughter. When she returned to Lexington, she went by the Sherrill Real Estate office, where she works, to feed her cat, who resides at the office. When they parked on the side of the building, Tammy noticed that one pane of a window in their small rental behind the office was broken. She investigated further and noticed another window on the same side of the building busted, but not broken out. When she got to the front door of the office, she found the window in the door also broken. However, all doors were locked – the one to the rental space and the main one to the real estate office. It appeared no one had entered the building.

Tammy called the Lee County Sheriff’s Office to report her findings. They dispatched Officer Stark with the Lexington Police Department. A report was made and the investigation began.

On Monday morning, at 8 a.m., Tammy reported to work at the Sherrill Offices. As she entered the office, she knew right away they had been “hit again”. She found a layer of yellow, crystal-like dust all over the floors, desks, files, fixtures – everything. There were adult-sized footprints throughout the dust, and in one office, some curtains had been dragged from a window through the fine powder.

Then Tammy noticed more windows broken. The same windows she discovered partially broken the day before were now completely broken out, leaving shards of sharp jagged edges around the panes. The rental office door had been opened and six rocks were on the floor inside. The florescent light bulbs were busted out of their fixtures.

In the main office, a side door had been unlocked and accessed due to the window beside it being completely busted out. This is where the culprit(s) gained entry into the office where they could leave the dusty powder.

Officer Stark returned to the office at Tammy’s request, and the investigation expanded. The officer gathered some of the dust and began canvassing the town to see if anyone knew what it was. In the meantime, he encouraged Tammy to leave the office, as a precaution in case the powder was caustic. Stark had a volunteer firefighter tell him that the powder looked like “stuff from a fire extinguisher.”

Stark called Tammy and asked her if they had a fire extinguisher in the office. She said they did, so the two of them met again at the Sherrill Office, where they discovered the fire extinguisher missing from its place on the wall.

Nothing in the office was missing. “It’s so strange,” Tammy said. “They did not touch our computers. They opened some drawers and put some items on top of the desks, but they didn’t take anything. There were even a few dollars and some change in the drawers they opened, but they did not take anything. It did look like they tried to get in the safe, though.

Now the question remains. Were they vandals or villains? Apparently, no other businesses in the area were vandalized last Saturday and Sunday nights. Anyone having information about this incident is encouraged to contact the Lexington Police Department immediately.

The fire extinguisher has not been found.

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