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Shreveport family feels helpless against repeated vandalism - KTBS.com - Shreveport, LA News, Weather and Sports

Shreveport family feels helpless against repeated vandalism

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Murderous threats. Spray-painted obscenities on three sides of her home. Sugar in her gas tank. That's what Kenyata Patterson and her husband Billy Russell say they woke up to a week ago, and it's not the first time.

Patterson says she's been concerned for her safety since breaking up with an ex-boyfriend 16 months ago.

"He's made threats to kill me, to kill my husband damage our cars, vandalize our home- which he has now done," Patterson says.

Patterson says she knows her ex is behind the vandalism, and the attacks come with steep costs. The first time it cost $3,000 to repair their cars. This time the total will likely be higher.

Without any witnesses to the crime, Patterson says she has few options but to wait and see if it happens again.

"It makes you nervous," Patterson says. "It's spray paint now, but what's next?"

Shreveport Police say residents concerned about safety can enlist the help of a neighborhood watch or sign up for free periodic checks in which an officer stops by a house or business.

When it comes to collecting evidence, investigators say home security cameras are invaluable.

"That camera does not blink," says SPD Public Information Officer Marcus Hines. "It simply records what it sees. It does not discriminate. It does not go to sleep. It's a very effective tool."

Patterson's husband, Billy Russell Jr., says the security cameras will have to wait. As an independent contractor, he can't take jobs while his truck has offensive graffiti on it, and he's losing money every day he doesn't work.

"[A surveillance company employee] said he'll put up motion lights and cameras, but how am I going to have the $800 if I can't work?" Russell asks.

Police were able to find an old warrant on Patterson's ex-boyfriend stemming from an alleged physical attack, and may pick him up on that.

Patterson says she has a protective order against her ex requiring him to keep a distance of 100 feet, but the spray-paint slurs just outside her bedroom window convince her he's much closer.

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