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Berlin, Ocean Pines News Worcester County Bayside Gazette Logo Berlin, Ocean Pines News Worcester County Bayside Gazette


‘Persons of interest’ sought by police in Berlin vandalism

(Feb. 5, 2015) Police have several “persons of interest” in the Jan. 25 vandalism spree in downtown Berlin, although no arrests appeared to be pending as of mid-week.
Berlin Police Chief Arnold Downing said law enforcement personnel continue to follow up on several leads concerning the incident, which involved at least 30 automobiles and three business marked by spray paint.
Downing would not disclose the exact timeline or path of the crimes, citing “pertinent information for the investigation,” but said there was a “large list of streets” affected, including several businesses on Pitts Street.
“Nobody in the world is going to tell you where it started unless they were there,” Downing said. “We can’t tell you this one happened first or this one happened first until we have everything locked down.”
According to Town Administrator Laura Allen, the town removed spray paint on several transformers on Esham Avenue, and a “private party” removed paint on the affected businesses on Pitts Street.  
Meanwhile, law enforcement continues to await damage estimates from several of the victims.
“Most of them actually have removed most of the spray paint from their vehicles, but we’re trying to get up with all of the victims,” Downing said. “We need to make sure we get bills so we can calculate that dollar amount.”
Downing urged the public to remain vigilant and contact police with any information regarding the case.
“We just need everyone to look out the windows every now and then and pay attention to their property and their surroundings,” he said. “That’s going to be a great help to us. If you walk outside with a dog, pay attention to what’s going on. When you go in and out of a car go ahead and look up and down the street.
“Anybody that saw anything on the evening of Sunday and the early morning of Monday that was suspicious, please go ahead and tell us what they saw that evening,” Downing continued. “When you talk about things getting solved, [the public] are the ones that are the eyes and ears for us. Give us a call and we’ll go ahead and decide what is pertinent to the case.”
Downing praised public response, saying “the community has an opportunity to go ahead and provide some information to us and they’ve been great in doing that. We’re talking about many phone calls, tips and thoughts have been coming in, not only from people affected, but people who have nothing to do with it in downtown, people who don’t even live in town that have heard information.
“We’re getting quite a few tips from people and we’re glad for every one of them that comes in,” Downing continued. “Definitely nothing is too small. If we can go ahead and eliminate people that we have as persons of interest because we know exactly where they were and it fits the timeline and locations, then that’s one person we don’t have to waste our energy on investigating or looking into because we know that they had nothing to do with it.
“On the other hand, if someone gives us a name and that takes us on a path, it gives us something to go ahead and build on.”
To report tips to the Berlin Police Department call 410-641-1333.