Up to 30 cars were damaged at a car lot in Lake City after they were doused with a dangerous substance, causing damage to set in.
Seattle police are investigating the incident at Wild West Cars and Trucks. Workers arrived at the lot Sunday expecting a busy day of making deals but were surprised by what they found instead.
“This is about the fourth or fifth time it's happened. We believe it (the chemical) to be aircraft stripper," owner Randy Lindquist said.
The business has high definition surveillance cameras which show how it happened. Just before 3:00 a.m., a car that appeared to be a new Toyota Camry drove along the lot. A person sitting in the backseat of the car leaned out the window and could be seen spraying something on the cars.
“It will start to remove the paint until the car is stripped down and it will continue to remove the paint and wear on the rubber surfaces of the car," Lindquist said.
Workers had to clean the cars before they could even open for the day.
“We've put a lot of heart running this as a family business,” Jennifer Lindquist said. “We work six days a week and within 20 seconds, 30 seconds someone can take three, four months of hard work to pay for the damage."
Randy Lindquist believes the attacks stem from a personal dispute that happened years ago. Seattle police came out to take a report, but the business says since it's a repeat problem, they want results.
“I just want more involvement from the police department to get it stopped," Randy said. The business will have to repaint the cars and replace the damaged fixtures so they can be sold, and they will have to pay the entire cost.
“It's scary for us because you can only afford for that to happen so many times and I don't know how we're going to get through the couple hundred thousand dollars in damage they did last night," Randy said.
They're asking for anyone who might have information to call the police and say they're ready to offer a reward if that's what it takes to stop this dangerous destruction.