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Air rifle vandal attacks Abingdon bus shelters
A GUN-TOTING vandal shot the glass out of 10 Abingdon bus shelters, in drive-by shootings causing thousands of pounds in damage.
The wave of smashed bus stops, which began last Tuesday, has already cost Abingdon Town Council £5,250 to clear up.
But it is only a matter of time before attacker injures someone, the council has warned.
Head of service Steve Rich said: “It is all done under cover of darkness but we believe they are driving past and firing pellets with an air rifle.
“It costs us to replace the glass, and it takes up our officers’ time to clear it up, but the real problem is that sooner or later someone will make a mistake, someone will be in that shelter and they will get hit.”
The culprits have so far smashed 21 panes of glass in bus shelters, and after one replacement set was smashed, the council has given up replacing them.
Mr Rich said the council wanted to use the Oxford Mail to appeal for witnesses. He said: “We don’t know who is doing this, it is always during the evening after our officers have gone home.
“What can we do?”
He said none of the attacks had been caught on CCTV.
The shelters targeted so far are in Wootton Road, Dunmore Road, the Peachcroft estate, Radley Road, Oxford Road and Trendell Place.
Abingdon mayor Angela Lawrence said the attacks were a “huge waste of public money”. She added: “It’s just sheer vandalism for a few seconds of misguided pleasure which is costing the council thousands of pounds.
“As fast as we replace the glass they will be out shooting at it again.
“It’s not what you expect in peaceful Abingdon-on-Thames.”
She said all town councillors had been briefed to look out for any suspicious behaviour in their own area.
She asked readers: “If you see anybody walking around with anything that looks like it might be causing the damage let us or the police know.”
To the criminals responsible she said: “Would you rather the town council spent thousands having to replace this glass or have money spent to provide services which you could benefit from?”
Town councillor Mike Badcock said: “I think this is someone showing off in front of their mates, and once one has done it, they have all got to.
“This is £5,000 that could have been used to fund some old folks’ Christmas party.”
Anyone who has information about the attacks can call the police non-emergency number 101.