New Year's Eve yobs damage about 30 vehicles left overnight in Saffron Walden's Swan Meadow car park
Vandals went on the rampage in Saffron Walden on New Year's Eve, damaging around 30 vehicles that had been left in a council car park.
Wipers were bent out of shape, bonnets and doors scratched and wing mirrors smashed as yobs left a trail of destruction that was discovered by owners returning to their cars in the Swan Meadow car park on New Year's Day (Saturday).
Essex Police has appealed for information and dashcam and CCTV footage as it launches an inquiry into the widespread vandalism amounting to thousands of pounds.
A spokesman for the force said: "We received a number of reports of vehicles damaged in the New Pond Lane area of Saffron Walden.
"It’s believed the vehicles were damaged between 2pm on December 31 and 2pm on January 1. Enquiries are ongoing and CCTV from the car park has been requested.
"An officer has been allocated to the investigation and will make contact with the victims and progress our enquiries. We need anyone who saw anything or has any CCTV or dashcam footage to contact us."
Photos posted on the Uttlesford Area Crime Alert Facebook page showed the extent of the damage. Some cars had their entire bonnets scratched while others had panelling the full length of the vehicle marked. Angry owners called the vandalism "absolutely disgusting" and urged police to take the issue seriously.
Others reported there had been incidents of vandalism to vehicles on private driveways in other parts of Saffron Walden on New Year's Eve.
The 394-bay Swan Meadow car park, the largest pay-and-display in Saffron Walden, is run by Uttlesford District Council. Motorists leaving their cars overnight on New Year's Eve would have been able to do so for free as parking charges were waived over the festive period.
Anyone with information can submit a report online at https://www.essex.police.uk or use the 'Live Chat' button to speak to an online operator between 7am and 11pm, quoting crime reference number 42/322/22. Alternatively you can call Essex Police on 101 or contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.