Destructive craze costing a fortune

The broken door mirror on a car in Shankill Street. INLM1912-102gc
The broken door mirror on a car in Shankill Street. INLM1912-102gc
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A DESTRUCTIVE craze of damaging wing mirrors on cars is costing Lurgan residents a fortune in repairs.

Yet another family in Lurgan have been forced to pay out more than £400 to fix a damaged wing mirror after an early morning attack.

A woman, who lives in Shankill, contacted the ‘MAIL’ after her car wing mirror was destroyed by a vandal.

She said she heard a noise around midnight at her home and then noticed her Citroen was damaged.

The woman, who did not want to be identified, said: “I am sick of it.”

“This is the fourth or fifth car I have had damaged,” said the woman who has lived in the area for around 24 years.

She said she has to park her car off the main street as vandalism has become such a regular occurrence in that neighbourhood.

“They are scumbags and tramps who have no respect for anyone.

“Why don’t they just walk on and mind their own business,” she said.

Just last week there was another spate of vandalism with wing mirrors broken on a number of cars in Windsor Avenue.

And around a month ago residents in Windsor Avenue spoke of their fear after a gang went on the rampage and wing mirrors were damaged on around 10 vehicles.

Mechanic Martin McGeown of Martin McGeown Auto Repairs in Lower North Street, said in certain areas residents ‘can’t hold out’ to buying new wing mirrors.

He said residents, particularly in Victoria Street, were tortured with vandals on a Friday and Saturday night kicking vehicles and damaging mirrors.

“I think people are just sick of it. Some of them think there is no point in buying a new one as it will be kicked out the next week.

“Victoria Street especially, people can’t seem to hold out to them,” said Mr McGeown.

The mechanic said most ordinary wing mirrors cost around £120 minimum. However, he explained that electric mirrors or mirrors with indicators or those that fold in can be very expensive to repair and replace.

In relation to the vandalism in the Shankill Street area on Wednesday, May 3, police said they had received a report of criminal damage at about 12.50am.

“A 19 year old was stopped a short while later in connection with the incident and he is due to return to Lurgan Police Station in the near future as a voluntary attender,” said a PSNI spokesperson.

“Following a similar incident in the Windsor Avenue area in March 2012, a 16 year old male was arrested and charged with criminal damage,” the PSNI spokesperson added.

Lurgan Neighbourhood Policing Inspector, Kenneth Annett, said: “Acts like these are simply wilful damage which not only cause hassle and disruption to vehicle owners but also costs them in financial terms.

“We are determined to continue to bring these people who cause this damage to justice.

“To do this we need the continued support of the community,” said Inspector Annett.

“If you notice anything of this nature, or any suspicious activity, we need you to come forward and report it to us on 0845 600 8000.”

“Any concerned motorists are advised to take a few seconds and fold their wing mirrors in at night.

“Anyone who would like to speak to police about concerns in their local area should contact their local Neighbourhood Policing Team.”