Residents living in San Francisco’s Lake Street neighborhood said Saturday that their cars had recently been vandalized.
Most of the damage was done in one block Friday afternoon, on the north side of Lake Street between 17th and 18th avenues.
A resident told NBC Bay Area on Saturday that their home video showed a man walking along a row of parked cars, breaking windows with a crowbar for no apparent reason.
Richie Greenberg posted the video of the aftermath on Twitter after seeing how extensive the damage was. He continued down the street and counted a total of seven vandalized vehicles Friday afternoon.
“He was going car by car, with what we understand was either a hammer or a crowbar — and he just hit one car — specifically targeting the windshield and then went to the next car and the next,” Greenberg said.
San Francisco resident Ryan Hightower said his Subaru SUV was hit several times. He said he had just returned from vacation when a San Francisco police officer knocked on his door to tell him what had happened.
“It was our welcome back to San Francisco, which was really shocking,” he said.
Like the other vehicles, nothing was stolen, but Hightower’s SUV was damaged far more than anyone else’s.
“My entire windshield was broken and so was the passenger side window or rather the driver’s side window and as you can see the side mirror was also broken,” he said.
Hightower said the car’s window has already been replaced at a cost of $1,200 and all repairs could cost closer to $1,500.
San Francisco has a bad reputation among locals and visitors alike when it comes to car break-ins.
Police told NBC Bay Area Investigative Services that the city averaged 74 break-ins per day in 2021.
Despite the city’s notorious reputation, residents said they were surprised it happened in their neighborhood.
Greenberg said he was surprised, too, so he went home and began reviewing all the security camera footage at his Lake Street home. He said he was too far away to catch the vandalism, but his surveillance video shows a police officer responding almost immediately.
“We know very quickly in just a few minutes after one of the bystanders here heard and saw what was going on — and they called SFPD — and there was a specific officer who responded within about a minute,” he said.
Meanwhile, street cleaning crews swept the last of the glass off Lake Street Saturday afternoon as neighbors dug into their pockets to fix their cars.
Editor’s note: Our initial report incorrectly stated that the incident occurred Saturday night. It has since been corrected to Friday afternoon.