A north-east family whose car garage has been hit by vandals time and again say a further “nightmare” attack has caused damage to more than a dozen cars and cost their business an estimated £100,000.
The latest incident at Murray Motors, owned by dismayed couple Avril and Gordon Murray, involved thirteen vehicles which were sprayed with extra-strong paint stripper.
The couple say it’s the latest in a litany of attacks their now 35-year-old family-run business has suffered over a number of years.
“It’s just awful,” a despairing Mrs Murray, 58, said.
“It has been going on for 16 years now. It’s just continual harassment.
“They have damaged so many cars overnight. We came in this morning and there’s 13 vehicles we cannot sell. It’s just a nightmare.”
Images of the individual believed to responsible were captured on CCTV.
It’s understood they struck a short time after the couple left for the evening.
The footage show the alleged perpetrator jumping over an eight foot fence on South Road, wearing distinctive trainers, to cause the damage.
The family are hopeful the images will help police track down those responsible, but Mrs Murray fears that alone won’t be enough to end the years of “continual harassment” aimed at her 63-year-old husband and their son, 30.
“We’ve had death threats, so has our son, and we’ve had abuse shouted at us because these people want us out,” Mrs Murray added.
“We invested £7,000 in security cameras because it was happening so often.
“The value of the cars involved comes to about £100,000.”
She added that cars had been scratched before or paint stripper thrown over vehicles that prevented them from being sold.
Further vandalism, including death threats, have also been sprayed on the couple’s personal cars at home and at their son’s home.
The family say this latest attack takes the tally of cars damaged over the past 18 years from 61 up to 74.
In 2016, the couple were moved to offer a substantial reward for any help in identifying the person they caught on CCTV following damage to seven cars.
That appeal did not, however, result in any information coming to light.
Mrs Murray is, however, now calling for anyone who may know the culprit or who saw the latest incident, which took place between 8.40pm and 9pm on Tuesday, March 23, to contact the police.
Constable Christopher Lamb said yesterday: “Inquiries are ongoing into this incident and I am appealing to anyone who may have information to come forward.”
Anyone who may have seen anything suspicious in the area, knows who was responsible or has any information relating to the incident is asked to call police quoting incident number 0508 of March 24.
Information can also be passed anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.