Vehicle damage to student cars parked on Second Street

By Tori Sanders, The Circuit

In the early morning hours of Jan. 21, 2018, damage was done to five vehicles parked on Second Street, outside of Elizabeth Hall.

The vehicles were parked along the curb and the incident was reported by Benedictine security at 1:56 A.M. according to the offense report from the Atchison Police Department.

Four of the five vehicles’ side view mirrors  were broken and additional damage was done to one of the vehicles’ fenders, and another vehicles’ antennae and brand emblem.

It remains unknown as to who may have caused the damage.

“We continue to follow leads which then will help us to identify the person responsible for doing this,” said Atchison Police Chief Mike Wilson.

While they do deal with criminal damage to vehicles occasionally around the city, Wilson reassured the public that this is a unique case, and that this incident is the only one of its kind in recent months, and currently under investigation.

What was especially unique about this damage was that there were several cars parked adjacent to one another.

Wilson also said that there is not much that could have been done differently to prevent this incident.

“You were parked in a well-traveled area that is often watched by people who just travel, as it is by patrol cars that frequent that area,” he pointed out. “BC security frequently watches that area, as they did that night.”

He acknowledged that the vehicles were parked in a well-lit area, and not in a dark or desolate corner of a parking lot or street.

Junior Evie Wagner woke up that morning to a text from a friend who had noticed police officers present outside Elizabeth Hall. She realized, on her way to 8:00 a.m. mass at St. Benedict’s Church that one of the cars damaged was her own.

She got a call later that day from Benedictine security, notifying her of the incident and later called the police station for more information.

“It’s kind of frustrating because I don’t want to park on Second Street anymore,” she said.

She brought up the fact that between the cars parked on both side of the road, and the hills that have to be driven over, visibility is often limited.

“If Benedictine had more parking for people who live in Elizabeth, we wouldn’t have to park on [there],” Wagner said.

She acknowledged the fact that other parking lots are available but pointed out that the walk is often much farther than that of other dorms.

Wagner was also rear-ended at the end of last year while driving north on Highway 73. She plans on getting all damage fixed when she takes her car back home to Colorado at the end of the semester.

Aside from additional parking, Wagner agreed that there isn’t much more preventative action that could have been taken.

Chief Wilson noted that the police department will continue to follow up on any leads as the case remains under investigation.

“Unfortunately, these things happen and when they do happen we have to identify those responsible for doing it, and we are hopeful that that will happen.”