New Britain Police are investigating complaints of rocks being thrown at cars from the busway bridge under construction near St. Claire Avenue.
New Britain resident Lionel Arroyo says he’s going to move out of his apartment if the damage doesn’t stop.
“Here, here … here”, said Arroyo, pointing to dents in his newly purchased Toyota minivan.
The vehicle has been dented and scratched by rocks thrown from the elevated busway that will eventually connect New Britain to Hartford.
“I’ve only made two payments and I already have $3,000 in damage,” said Arroyo.
His wife’s SUV had a window busted out by a rock, and several neighbors report damage as well.
“I didn’t notice it right away, then a couple hours later I looked and I was like, ‘Oh my gosh, I was hit, too,” said neighbor Lisa Bergin.
The rocks are damaging cars at the apartment complex on one side of the busway, and they’ve also damaged more than 20 cars at “Papa’s Car Dealership” on the other side of the busway.
“The dealer got hit for over 20 cars, and they’re pushing towards the state to do something. The state keeps pushing it to the contractor. The contractor doesn’t want to hear nothing. Who’s going to pay for the damage then?” said Arroyo.
Police say they’ve received several complains and that they have been investigated, but they have no suspects.
No officers were made available for an interview Thursday night, but Captain Thomas Steck sent Fox CT the following statement:
“Our department has received several complaints about rocks from the busway construction project being thrown into a neighborhood adjacent to the work site. The complaints were investigated by the patrol division with no suspect information being developed. It is unfortunate that numerous cars parking in the area sustained damage as a result of the malicious mischief. The incidents seem to be concentrated in the East Street, Allen Street and St. Claire Avenue neighborhood where the new bridge is under construction.
“As a result of the complaints officers from the second, third and fourth shifts are being assigned to directed patrols in that area in an attempt to identify and arrest the person or persons responsible for these acts of vandalism. Our department is committed to improving the quality of life in all of our city’s neighborhoods. We are, and will continue to investigate these complaints as well as to have high visibility directed patrols in the area to prevent future victimization.
“Anyone who has information about these incidents is asked to contact the New Britain Police Department at 860-826-3120 or the Tip Line at 860-826-3199, or on the web at NewBritainPolice.org. All information can be kept anonymous.“
“Nothing is being done and we have a real problem,” said Arroyo.
But Arroyo says that despite the weeks of continued rock-throwing and damage, police officers have told him they are overworked and don’t have the resources to monitor the busway all night.
He’s just hoping investigators can catch the culprits before his cars are struck again.
“Put lights up there, camera. … Something’s got to get done,” said Arroyo.