Santa Paula Times

$500 reward offered for Oaks mail box vandals

September 29, 2000
Santa Paula News
By Peggy Kelly Santa Paula TimesJoyce and Perry Schreffler have had it up to here with vandals and are offering a $500 reward for those who have been bashing mailboxes in the Oaks area of the city.“I’m so darn sick and tired of these people,” said Joyce, after the second incident of mailbox vandalism.The vandals struck at a rental home owned by the Schrefflers in the Oaks area and left the post “very wobbly. ..we replaced it and the first night it was out there they came by and bashed it.”Commander Mark Hanson of the Santa Paula Police Department said such vandalism “comes in cycles; normally it’s very hard to prove unless you have an eyewitness, and sometimes money will motivate a witness. We would appreciate the public’s cooperation in this matter and any matter of vandalism. . .we’d take great pleasure in prosecuting these individuals to the fullest extent of the law.”Schreffler said she has heard that mailbox vandalism has been on the rise: “I guess someone has nothing better to do then take a baseball bat and as they drive by bash,” others’ property. “We’re willing to offer a reward of $500 for the arrest and conviction of those who have done this. . .I don’t know how else to stop them.”The Oaks clings to its rural character which means no street lights, making it a tempting destination for vandals. “I guess the vandals get their funzies doing that. . .it shows they have no regard or respect for anything. If somebody did that to their place they’d be incensed. . .you want your home to look halfway decent.”
She said being victimized twice has been especially frustrating. “They always do this stuff in the wee hours when they can’t been seen.”Halloween is drawing near but Schreffler said she is hesitant to decorate for the holiday that means so much to kids.“Our quiet little Santa Paula; other towns have problems too but when they’re in your own backyard,” it’s especially discouraging. The Schrefflers are out several hundred dollars for materials and labor to repair damages but “money’s not the point. . .the lack of concern and respect is what aggravates me. We’re willing to offer a reward because somebody’s got to do something. If nothing is done it will never stop.”Tips on the vandals can be called in to the Santa Paula Police Department, 525-4474.