HICKORY, N.C. - Hickory police say multiple vehicles sustained damage from vandalism that occurred in the department's parking lot last week.
When Hickory Police Department employees started getting flat tires, it didn't take long to find the culprit. More than 50 half-inch thick black metal tacks were scattered across employee and public parking access areas. Now, they're trying to figure out who did it.
Multiple police vehicles and several civilian cars reported nails in tires on February 14, Valentine's Day, by the tacks. The nails punctured 20 or so tires, taking several police cruisers off the street.
“This is more serious than mere damage to property," said Chief Thurman Whisnant. "This act put lives at risk and is inexcusable. Once we identify those responsible, we will pursue charges to the fullest extent to the law.”
Police aren't sure why someone would spread the half-inch nails, but now they're looking at surveillance footage to see if they can figure out who did it.
"[It's] probably not an accident," said Chrystal Deiter, victim and community services coordinator with the police department.
Whether it was done as some sort of joke or maliciously, authorities want to remind whoever did it that this is more serious than property damage.
"If they were to drive a vehicle with a damaged tire they could have had a vehicle crash or have the total inability to respond to a call for service," said Deiter.
Hickory Police are asking anyone who knows anything about this incident to give them a call at 828-328-5551.