• Suspect in Melbourne vandalisms could be using slingshot


    MELBOURNE, Fla. - West Melbourne police are fed up with a vandal who's been shattering storefront windows for months.

    The latest round of damage happened over the weekend, when four businesses were targeted.

    Channel 9's Melonie Holt found out it's a frustrating situation for Sun Clean Dry Cleaners and close to 50 others targeted in south Brevard County since December.

    Investigators said the vandal may be using a slingshot to propel ball bearings at businesses.

    A metal hurricane shutter served as a temporary window at Sun Clean Dry Cleaners in west Melbourne Monday. Most of the glass from the business' shattered storefront was cleaned up.

    "Now we have to replace the whole front, and that's costly. And all the lettering on our windows," said owner Janice Turnbaugh.

    Turnbaugh said she has no idea why someone is causing all the damage, but they need to be stopped.

    "They're causing a lot of damage unnecessarily," Turnbaugh said.

    Police have been collecting ball bearings fired through storefronts along the 192 and Wickham Road corridors.

    Investigators said the issue is larger than one of vandalism.

    "It could be somebody hurt, they're propelling this projectile very quickly. Somebody could be hurt by falling glass and/or the ball bearing they're using to break the window," said Lt. Richard Cordeau with Melbourne Police.

    "Right now, we don't have much to go on and we're asking the public to report it so we can follow up on any leads we may get," Cordeau said.

    Police are asking area business owners to review their surveillance videos, in the hopes their cameras may have captured the culprit.

    Crimeline is assisting investigators by offering up to a $1,000 reward for information leading to an arrest in the cases.

    Information can be left anonymously at 1-800-423-TIPS.

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    Suspect in Melbourne vandalisms could be using slingshot