STOCKTON (CBS13) – It was a rude awakening New Year’s morning for neighbors in a Stockton community after more than 30 cars had been broken into or vandalized.
It came as a surprise to many of the people in the area. Broken windows and shattered glass could be seen left on the ground on Friday.
For Jocelyn Soriano and Summer Stewart, the scene was a grim start to their 2021.
“It just gives less hope that this year will be any better,” Soriano said.
They’re two victims among dozens in an alarming spree of car break-ins and vandalism along Shoreline Drive in Stockton. Stewart said they damaged more than just physical property; they stole her insulin too.
“I need those things to survive,” Stewart said. “I’m already financially struggling myself to even pay for my insulin.”
Down the street, the Roof family was impacted as well. Because of the vandalism, Donna Roof’s daughter couldn’t get to work in the morning. She’s a nurse at Doctors Medical Center in Modesto.
“She works with COVID patients,” Roof said. “It’s unfortunate it’s just a domino effect.”
Stockton Police said as many as 31 cars were hit early New Year’s morning, but Roof fears it could be even more.
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Sharon Buck with the local neighborhood watch is working with police to figure out who may be behind it, and why they may have done it.
“We have issues just like every neighborhood, but this is massive,” Buck said. “This is a lot of cars.”
Buck said they’re drafting emails to the neighborhood to ask anyone if they have surveillance video and ask if anyone may have witnessed it.
Saul Camacho, who lives in the area, believes he may have seen the suspect as they stopped.
“A guy was just walking by with a baseball bat,” Camacho said, “Just swinging it around.”
Neighbors like Stewart and Soriano are calling for their apartment complex, Lakeview Village, to add more security cameras after multiple residents were impacted. They also hope whoever may have done these acts of vandalism may turn themselves in to police.
“Just come forward,” Soriano said. “You don’t understand what people are going through.”
Stockton Police don’t have a suspect description at this point but did say whoever potentially committed the crimes could face felony burglary charges.