Car Windows Smashed on Park Road between 11th and 13th


One reader sends the photo above and another writes:

“Today there were 4 or 5 cars with their windows busted out on Park between 11th and 13th.”

58 Comment

  • I hope you catch them and beat them to a pulp!

  • This is a real shame. Package thefts have been on the rise too. How does this many windows get broken without anyone calling the cops? This would seriously take some time? And weren’t there any patrols? “ALL HANDS ON DECK”!!!!

  • It may feel good but probably not the best idea to post that letter on the car.

  • While there may be more options, it sounds like either someone was stealing something from the car, or wanted to break something because he or she could. Neither scenario is good, but someone breaking your windows for kicks leaves car owners with even fewer options to protect their property.

    Someone smashed into a friend of mine’s truck the other year with a rock. The thief was such a terrible throw that he actually missed the window and left a dent in the car body. Unfortunately, he tried again and succeeded. What made all of this even better was the two police officers sitting in a cruiser about 75 feet away, facing my friend’s vehicle. They were not too pleased when I asked them to check the scene out. They called whoever was responsible for finger printing (apparently officers can’t do this on their own), but said that it was unlikely that the finger print team would come out.

  • The comment in the note about Jesus forgiving the mother reminds me of that Freakonomics study that found that crime rates dropped about 15-25 years after abortion became legal.

  • Emmaleigh504

    I was thinking that too. I don’t remember if they said where it was.

  • As the owner of this car, and a very angry person, surprisingly also a Christian:
    This has been done to my window twice in the past week, and it’s unreal to me that someone could do this when they aren’t even intending on stealing anything; it is solely out of malice. Left a laptop and a coach bag in the back seat.

    • The punks may have been going after those items but got interrupted and took off, so it may not have been pure malice on their part. But I have to ask – why on earth would you leave things like that on the back seat when you’ve had problems with people breaking into your car?

    • Why the hell are you leaving a laptop and coach bag in your car???

      • Why does it matter? Would you leave a laptop and coach bag inside your house if they belonged to you? Of course because that’s your property, and there’s a reasonable expectation that no one will be vandalizing or robbing it. Your car, like your home, is legally considered your property. It doesn’t matter what she left in the car. That’s like saying “It’s a bummer you got raped, but why were you walking around after dark?” The point is that those shitheads weren’t even trying to steal anything, they just wanted to prove something.

        • That’s a pretty twisted and extreme parallel you’re trying to draw there. If that’s the case, why don’t you leave your life savings in cash in your car too? And you can point your finger and say that it’s victim-blaming that someone took it.

          Bottom line is, small-time theft is a common occurrence that’s timed for the owner’s supposed absence. You have to take reasonable precautions so that they don’t happen. Leaving a laptop and a Coach bag in plain sight on a DC street is like walking around topless: it’s an advertisement, and not a very bright move.

          Sexual assault and small-time property theft are two totally different things. Sexual assault is on the person, and small-time property theft is on a peripheral object. I don’t know if you’re a survivor of the former, but I’m a victim of both, and your analogy is too far off to take seriously.

        • Rape is on the person, theft is on a peripheral objective. I’ve survived both, and that’s a “questionable analogy” to put it mildly.

        • Would you leave $500 in cash sitting on your front porch? Of course not. That’s a better analogy than the one you came up with. I disagree that if you leave a laptop on the backseat of your car there’s a reasonable expectation that no one will rob it; of course there *should* be, but if you really believe there *is* then you’re just not living in the real world.
          And don’t compare it to rape, it’s really insulting.

        • I question your comment because that would relieve anyone of responsibility:
          – “He shouldn’t have taken the $50,000 in cash I left in my backseat.”
          – “She shouldn’t have taken my cat- my cat likes to wander the neighborhood.”

          Bottom line is, decisions are made (sometimes deliberately, other times accidentally) in the owner’s (supposed) absence. Small-time theft is a malicious decision against an owner made in the owner’s absence. It’s up to the individual to take reasonable precautions to protect one’s belongings in their absence.

          Theft of belongings is NOT like a crime of violence on a person. Theft is usually in absence of the person AWAY FROM the person, and crime of violence is in presence of the person, ON the person. Please refrain from using offensive comparisons. Rape and property theft are not apples-to-apples.

        • Why does it matter? Your right to your personal property doesn’t make it any less foolish to leave valuables in plain sight in Columbia Heights. I have a right to walk down the street waving $100 bills in the air and yelling, “Yipee, I’m rich!” but I shouldn’t be surprised if someone snatches the bills and runs.

        • or they were trying to steal it and ran off.

          Sure, it’s the car owner’s choice to leave valuables in the car. And they shouldn’t get stolen. And insurance would cover most of it if the car did get broken into.

          But when I weigh “carry my coach bag and laptop into my house” vs. “increased chance of having to call my insurer; call the police; cancel my credit cards and get replacements; buy new wallet, phone, sunglasses, checkbook, purse, keys, and laptop; transfer all my contacts and files to new phone and laptop; check credit rating periodically for identity theft; perhaps re-key car door if car keys were among the stolen items; replace car window; vacuum glass out of car; experience increased insurance premiums; and pay deductible” I think taking stuff into the house is a lot easier. OP is allowed to make a different choice–and even allowed to have a different interpretation than me of what Jesus would have thought had He been alive in an era of cars and Coach bags.

        • Wow! Just wow. You need to take off the rose colored glasses and see the world how it really is, not how you wish it were…

        • “Would you leave a laptop and coach bag inside your house if they belonged to you? Of course because that’s your property, and there’s a reasonable expectation that no one will be vandalizing or robbing it.”
          Actually, that’s incorrect. You SHOULD have a reasonable expectation that no one will break into your car and steal a laptop left in plain sight. But in Columbia Heights circa 2014, that expectation is not reasonable – in fact, it’s patently unreasonable, if not absurd. We can lament the state of things, and wish it were different, but that doesn’t change the objective reality that it’s an unreasonable expectation.
          In addition, any time you have the urge to analogize something (*anything*) to rape – stop, think about it, and then don’t freakin’ do it.

        • Bringing up rape in unnecessary and irrelevant situations such as this one is completely insensitive to survivors. CHECK YOURSELF.

      • I don’t understand this either. I wouldn’t leave anything of obvious value (like a laptop/Coach bag) or even of possible value (backpack, gym bag, etc.) in my back seat in my hometown, let alone in D.C. It’s just common sense.

        • Every time my parents visit, I make them take everything out of their car. When they protest that the items aren’t worth anything, I remind them that while they know that, the would-be thief doesn’t, and it’s best not to have him discover that fact after the window is already broken.

          • Yeah, I was telling a visiting friend the same thing (regarding a plastic bag with fruit in it) — “They don’t know it’s just fruit.”

          • Actually, maybe in my hometown I didn’t always put something like a backpack in the trunk if I was going to be away from the car for just a short time. I’ve been in the D.C. area so long now that it’s hard to remember with 100% accuracy how I did things before.
            I was back in my hometown a few years ago and met up with a friend of mine at a restaurant. I asked him to walk me back to my car, as I was parked on a somewhat dark side street. He noticed that I had the Club on my steering wheel, and said, “You just gained major city-girl cred points with that,” which made me LOL. 🙂

          • @textdoc – gender assumptions destroyed!

      • brookland_rez

        When I first moved to the city 10 years ago, I left a cell phone charge and a few small item in my car. Had my window smashed and the items stolen. From then on whenever I park on the street, I put things out of sight. Never have had a problem since.
        I know people have the right to leave whatever they want in their cars, and in a perfect world, nothing would happen. Alas we live in an imperfect world where things get stolen and crime happens. I prefer to take steps to reduce my risk of being a target of crime.

    • We had our old Mazda driver side window busted a few years ago. Some boxes left in the back seat and doors remained locked. Looks like it was all for shits and giggles. Dumbass kids.
      (This was between 11th and Sherman on Columbia)

    • I would be super pissed as well, but a note like this says “come break my windows a few more times” You will be so angry you will sleep in your car for weeks to catch them, beat them to a pulp, find out they are under 18 and spend the rest of your days reading the Bible in a cell. That’s the story in my head at least.

      • Actually, in Maryland, castle law would apply and because your vehicle is legally considered your property you may be legally allowed to use even deadly force to defend yourself.

    • You don’t seem like the brightest bulb. My guess is that these people go on to break every single window in your car. They get off on notes like these.

  • That note seems like a really good way to get them to do it a third time…

  • I had this EXACT same thing happen to my car about 2 1/2 years ago on 5th St NE between E and F. They smashed my passenger window. I had it fixed, and then the exact same thing happened a couple days later. I couldn’t believe it.

    The first time they stole my prescription sunglasses, but left the GPS unit.

    I wonder if it’s the same person.

  • This happened a couple weeks ago to my roommate’s bf on Kenyon between Georgia and Sherman. The cop apparently said it was probably because he “had Virginia plates.”

  • Pft, I understand the anger, but what a childish note. Against abortion — unless of course the kids grow up to be little punks! *huge eyeroll* I don’t think abortion should ever be used as a casual insult, toward a mother, a kid, or anyone for that matter.

  • I walked by this car last night. I laughed because they were parked in a Zone 1 parking only, with MD plates. Maybe you should park back in MD.

  • I’m so glad that I don’t have a car.

  • That whole area of Columbia Heights is like car damage central. It’s either people looking to bust open windows out of malice or boredom or they’re looking to steal stuff. Or god forbid another drunken drive rolls up either 13th or 11th and just levels a bunch of parked cars.

  • I live on this street. A lot of car windows get smashed here. Often, nothing is stolen. One of my cars had it happen last year. The smashers left the belongings on the seat.

    Apparently, they get their kicks throwing a rock at the car and watching the glass break. It’s just really annoying.

  • Sadly as I read this…I did this as a teenager (mid 80’s) in Fairfax County. I had idle time on my hands, not much parental supervision and did it just for kicks. As an adult, I’ve always looked back feeling ashamed and quite stupid. 10 years ago, while living in DC, I had my car broken into and stolen. The police found it nearly three weeks later with all the property in the car gone. Karma did get me in the end.

  • That’s a really harsh note. Damn.

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