Vandalism on the rise in Truckee |

Vandalism on the rise in Truckee

Truckee’s usually quiet nights are suffering from a rash of vandalism. Estimated costs from the damage have already reached several thousand dollars this summer.

The Nevada County Sheriff’s Office has noticed the trend and is considering countermeasures.

“We had no idea that we were getting hit as hard as we were until the golf course and Pombo,” said NCSO Detective Ron Phelan, referring to recent incidents at Coyote Moon Golf Course and construction sites where local contractor Al Pombo is working. Phelan estimated that incidents of vandalism rose about 10 percent in the past 19 months in Truckee.

“It seems like we’re seeing less vandalism to private persons and more toward construction sites and companies,” Phelan said. “It’s not so personal, it’s more arbitrary.”

“Since summer is getting longer and kids are getting bored, we are having a heavy increase,” said Phelan, asking, “And where are your kids tonight?”

One of the more expensive incidents occurred two weeks ago when Truckee’s Coyote Moon Golf Course sustained between $10,000 and $20,000 of damage when 13 golf carts were rolled down a course into a pond. The course had been open only two weeks. Paul Martin, head of the Coyote Moon Golf Course, said that he has put up a $500 reward for the arrest of the perpetrators.

“Half a dozen people called after the incident to say how much they regretted that it happened,” said Martin. “They were very supportive.”

Martin mentioned another expensive case of vandalism at the Lake Tahoe Golf Course in South Lake Tahoe on July 12 and that Northstar-at-Tahoe also reported damaged golf carts last week.

“Sounds like a pattern to me,” said Phelan.

More recently, construction vehicles belonging to Al Pombo Construction had windows broken and sugar poured into their gas tanks for a second time at one of its local construction sites. The company estimates the cost of damages of each incident to be as high as $2,500.

The Pombos said they believe the vandals to be youths who overturned portable toilets and disrupted construction markers.

“The neighbors have called saying that they heard small voices at one o’clock in the morning,” said Carla Pombo. She said that the company has taken measures to increase security.

Other recent incidents of vandalism were found behind Tahoe Truckee Supply Inc., and a business on Donner Pass Road where several construction vehicles were damaged. Private residents also report several acts of vandalism every week.

The NCSO encourages Truckee residents who have suffered vandalism to report all instances.

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