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Sep. 21, 2019 | Saturday
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Vandals in truck damage post boxes along Concession 1 and Larkin Road
Larkin Road resident Draga Velicevic with her smashed mailbox. (Dariya Baiguzhiyeva/Niagara Now)

The rural mailboxes of a number of Niagara-on-the-Lake residents were wrecked or stolen this week.

Larkin Road resident Kim McQuhae, who described herself as a “light sleeper,” said she woke up hearing loud bangs at about 12:30 a.m. Monday night.

At first, she thought it might have been her neighbours coming home as she noticed high beams going on and a truck rolling past her house.

She heard bangs again and loud voices, and that’s when McQuhae realized it wasn’t her neighbours.

It was a full-size dark-coloured pickup truck coming toward Concession 1 Road, she said. The voices of at least two people in the vehicle sounded like they belonged to young men, she added. 

By the time McQuhae jumped out of bed, got dressed and hopped into her car, the truck had already turned off Larkin Road.

McQuhae turned around the corner and saw the truck going past Marynissen Estates Winery on Concession 1 Road and approaching Line 3.

“I suspect they’re more locals because they knew the roads,” McQuhae said in a phone interview.

“When they went around the corner from here, they went a lot faster. When they were driving down the (gravel) road hitting the mailboxes, they were going very slowly. Really slowly.”

When McQuhae turned on to Line 3, whoever was driving the truck probably realized she was following them, she said, so they “gunned it” and didn’t stop at the stop sign on Niagara Parkway.

McQuhae chased them for a while and then she thought it was not “worth everybody dying” so when she lost them around Line 6 and returned home.

“I realize sometimes it’s just kids having fun, but still … It’s just the fact they were driving along smashing mailboxes and I don’t understand why they take mailboxes because once you smash them, they’re crap.”

McQuhae’s mailbox was left untouched. She said a neighbour’s mailbox was taken – but their mail was left on the post.

Frogpond Farm Organic Winery owner Jens Gemmrich said he received a text from McQuhae at 1 a.m. Monday, informing him his mailbox was completely gone, not just thrown away somewhere nearby.

Gemmrich said such incidents have happened before, although not for a long time – about 10 years.

He said it was “not that uncommon” for kids to drive by and smash mailboxes with a baseball bat. “You shouldn’t damage other people’s property and think it’s funny,” he said.

Another Larkin street resident, Draga Velicevic, said in the 38 years she’s lived in the area, it was the second time this has happened.

One side of Velicevic’s mailbox was taken down and the back of it was also damaged.

The numbers and the sign on the mailbox were pulled down so, “somebody stopped and did a really good job,” she said.

“I’m surprised who wants to do that,” Draga said. “I guess they have nothing else to do.”

Across from the Velicevics, Jim Wiecha’s mailbox was smashed, removed from its post and dropped off at another neighbour’s driveway.

The residents said they are not going to file any reports to police. Velicevic said she contacted the Town of Niagara-on-the-Lake but was told there is nothing that can be done about the incident.

Some comments on social media indicated mailboxes were smashed on Line 7 this past week as well.

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