Dozens of Dalton businesses vandalized - | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Dozens of Dalton businesses vandalized, police search for suspect

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Hair salon damaged on Hamilton Street Hair salon damaged on Hamilton Street
Oscar's Shoe Repair among businesses damaged Oscar's Shoe Repair among businesses damaged
Buckin' Burrito's front window Buckin' Burrito's front window
Crutchfield's Furniture store boarded up following vandalism Crutchfield's Furniture store boarded up following vandalism

Dozens of Dalton businesses were damaged by vandalism. Now police are hoping surveillance video will lead them to who is responsible.

"I came in this morning and noticed our window was all cracked and shattered," explained Chris Bunch, owner of Crutchfield's Furniture on Hamilton Street.

Bunch arrived to work Tuesday morning to find vandals opened his family-run business early.

A piece of plywood now covers the shattered window.

"It is a pain, for everybody concerned," he told Channel 3. "I mean, you hate for it to happen to your business."

Bunch isn't alone.

Across the street Buckin' Burrito has a hole in its window.

A few doors down a hair salon was hit.

Oscar's Shoe Repair on Hamilton Street was also damaged.

"I found a rock, and I don't carry rocks here," the owner joked, showing Channel 3 the rock he assumes was thrown through his store front, causing $1,000 in damage.

As business owners wait on insurance agents to count up the damage police keep counting victims.

"Somebody broke out the windows of between 35 and 40 businesses," said Bruce Frazier, spokesperson for the Dalton Police Department.

The cases span four highly-traveled downtown streets.

Police believe the vandals struck in the early morning hours.

Some business owners have found marbles and rocks, but others wonder if bb guns played a roll.

"This is something that started out possibly just as a stupid prank," added Frazier, "but it certainly became more than that."

Damaged businesses, and the ones left untouched, are teaming up to offer what evidence they can.

"We're working with some of the businesses to see what may have shown up on surveillance systems," said Frazier.

Business owners and their customers hope it will lead to an arrest.

"I guess they just didn't have anything else to do, whoever it was," said Bunch, shaking his head.

"I do hope that they are found and they stop what they are doing," said Paige Watts, a Buckin' Burrito customer and resident of Hamilton Street.

While they wait for an arrest to be made, Chris Bunch is left to clean up the mess. One that will likely be costly for dozens of local business owners.

"A lot of people have a hard time paying for it," he explained, "it depends on what your deductible is on your insurance, but it can be tough."

The vandals did not enter the businesses or take anything, but police say the dollar amount of damage caused could result in felony charges.

The Dalton Police Department asks anyone with information to call Detective Greg Bates at 706-278-9085, extension 137.

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