Wave of Vandalism Leaves Ingleside Small Businesses with Broken Windows

Security camera footage shows a person who broke a window at Monza Pizzeria. Image courtesy of Z Touch Salon

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In the wee hours of Wednesday morning, a masked person with a scooter used a slingshot to shatter the windows of three storefronts on the 1900 block of Ocean Avenue, security camera footage posted online shows.

Taraval Station police officers are investigating the case.

Two of those mom-and-pop shops, Nails by Lisa and Serge-A-Lot, had their facade windows shattered on Monday. 

Monza Pizzeria, the third business, has had its windows broken seven times since it opened two years ago, according to the owner Juraci Filho.

“It’s terrible,” Filho told the Ingleside Light. “I think I might have to close down and move. It’s worse than my hometown in Brazil.”

Filho recently spent $8,600 on security gates to curb. The window broken on Wednesday will cost $1,000 to replace. 

“I have a family to take care of and there is always something,” Filho said. “The city doesn’t do anything.”

It’s unclear why these businesses were targeted.

As the Ingleside Light reported on June 4, small business owners are grappling with vandalism and burglaries as they struggle with the conditions caused by the pandemic.

Of the 168 commercial spaces in Ingleside’s stretch of Ocean Avenue, about 25% are vacant or inactive. Some that are in operation are still boarded up from window vandalism such as Walgreens on the 1600 block and Lucky Ocean Cafe on the 1700 block.

For its part, the Ingleside Merchants Association set up a Ocean Avenue Vandalism Fund using GoFundMe. The association has been passing out “Who to Call” posters that help business owners and employees identify what city service to seek in different situations. [Disclosure: The Ingleside Light is a founding member of the association.]

In this week’s Taraval Station newsletter, Capt. Nicholas Rainsford wrote about commercial burglaries.

“Commercial burglaries during Covid did increase in the Taraval Police District so being vigilant and making security improvements to your business is a smart way to deter crime in our community,” Rainsford wrote.

Rainsford advised in the newsletter that all small business owners secure their storefronts with audible alarms, motion lighting and camera systems.