Vandals strike CBD yet again
An 18-year-old man has been arrested after another vandalism rampage in the Porirua city centre.
Several businesses in Porirua’s Lydney Place South were targeted late on Thursday evening.
The damage was estimated to be about $10,000. Shopfront windows and doors were smashed.
The Porirua Trade and Commerce building and Good 2 U store were two of five buildings most affected. Damage to Good 2 U was estimated at $5000.
Kiwi Property owns all but one of the affected buildings.
A Porirua man was arrested and appeared in Porirua District Court on Friday.
Kapiti Mana Police Senior Sergeant James McKay said police would be monitoring the man while investigations continued.
Ian Robertson, facility manager for Kiwi Property, which owns North City Shopping Centre, said it was the third time in about four months damage had been done to buildings in the area, but previous incidents had not been so destructive.
‘‘This is a community issue, not just something for landlords and owners to deal with,’’ Robertson said.
‘‘From time to time we get groups of people with no direction in life and they run amok. There’s no accountability for them.’’
Robertson said police did everything they could and were very proactive when it came to this sort of crime.
Porirua Chamber of Commerce executive director Tracy Johnson said it was incredibly disappointing.
‘‘Retailers are devastated. But the underlying message is if people have information or see something happening, they should report it,’’ Johnson said.
She said the police, council and business owners needed to discuss whether the issue was being handled properly.
Curry Village in the Porirua CBD had a terrible end to 2015 – the restaurant was broken into three times within 10 days. Vandals smashed the glass front doors of the Hartham Place premises, forcing the owners to repair the dam- age while continuing to operate as a business.
Other recent vandalism has occurred at Billis Boutique in Cobham Court and the former Coin Save in the city centre.
The Cannons Creek Salvation Army headquarters was broken into in November. The organisation was hit three times last year. Its family store in Elsdon was also broken into twice.
Workmen replaced windows and doors in the CBD after the vandalism rampage last Thursday evening.