Sat, Nov. 16

Vandals shoot out 140 car windows
Shooters on rampage; suspects arrested

Young people with guns destroyed windows in cars, trucks and RVs across the Verde Valley Tuesday night and Wednesday morning. Cottonwood Police Lt. Jack Stapleton believes the damage estimate will eventually total "tens of thousands of dollars."

Thursday morning, just after midnight, the Cottonwood Police Department made two arrests. Taken into custody were 19-year-old Ray M. Scribner and a 14-year-old, both of Cottonwood. These arrests are the result of the cooperative efforts of area law enforcement, with the break coming from a tip received by the Clarkdale Police Department.

Scribner was transported to Yavapai County Jail, and the 14-year-old was transported to the Juvenile Detention Facility.

Police are asking for public assistance to paint a picture of the culprits and help prosecute them. Because they were shooting all night long, police believe many people have seen the small car and the subjects' faces. Stapleton said one owner was sitting inside his vehicle when it was shot. "We want to get these guys," he said.

A total of 140 windows were smashed in Cottonwood and Verde Village, but that number could rise. 125 of those cases were reported within the city limits, many in the parking lot of the Verde Valley Medical Center. A couple dozen cases were reported in Sedona and more in Clarkdale.

It is believed the vandals used a CO2-style BB gun. Cottonwood police described suspects as white males 18 to 20 years old between 5-foot-10 and 6-foot. One suspect was reported as having bleached blond hair. They were reportedly driving a light-colored small two-door hatchback car with a dark stripe down one side. The paint may be darker on the passenger roof area.

The damage varies in the vehicles. In some cases, the rear window was smashed; in other cases the side windows were shot out.

Sgt. Chris Wiley said 19 reports of broken windows were filed in Clarkdale, and damages are likely to average $300 to $500 depending upon the window. In one Clarkdale case, a very large RV window was destroyed by the gunfire. That is likely to be more expensive to replace, according to Wiley.

Individual cases of vandalism may qualify as misdemeanor crimes by themselves. But police are expected to package the crimes so the suspects are prosecuted as felons.

Reports place the time of the vandalism from two in the morning until six a.m. Police believe there are many witnesses who will be able to provide more information. They should call Cottonwood Police at 634-4246 or Silent Witness at (800) 932-3232.

These acts follow a rash of vandalism incidents throughout Yavapai County during the past two weeks, according to Susan Quayle of the Sheriff's Office. Damaged mailboxes, thrown eggs, incidents of breakage and other criminal acts have been on the rise across the county. The Yavapai County Sheriff's Office reminds citizens to be watchful in neighborhoods, pay attention and report any suspicious activity to local law enforcement. Any act of vandalism is a crime punishable by law.

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