• Chemical attack damages more than 20 cars at Seattle dealership

    By: Deedee Sun

    Updated:

    SEATTLE - A Seattle car dealership is out hundreds of thousands of dollars after someone sprayed chemicals all over its vehicles on New Year’s Eve. 

    In Wild West Cars & Trucks’ surveillance video, you see a white sedan with someone spraying a liquid chemical at the cars, at 2:53 a.m. 

    “They started in one end of our lot and came all the way down our front line, hitting about 22, 23 vehicles,” said Jessica Lindquist, whose family owns Wild West Cars & Trucks. 

    The chemical hits Mercedes, BMWs, Audis – you name it – and erodes the paint to the metal and melts plastic. 

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    “It eats through the paint, the plastic, headlights, trim. Anything,” said Randy Lindquist, the dealership’s owner. 

    “The car comes up right here, it's dispersing the chemical out the back window. So there is a passenger doing it,” he describes, pointing to the car in the video. 

    Lindquist says he believes the car is a 2017 white Lexus sedan with temporary plates still in the back window. 

    For their business, it's hundreds of thousands in damage. 

    “This is a family business. My uncle, he’s put everything into this and to know that someone can come by and destroy a quarter of your inventory,” Jennifer Lindquist said, “This is a huge hit. I would think at least a couple of months we’re going to be in the dark because of this.” 

    Wild West says its insurance company did a chemical analysis of the liquid and they believe it’s aircraft stripper. 

    They hope by sharing the video you can help identify the car and the suspects.

    If the chemical attack seems familiar to you, it might be because a nearly identical attack happened to a family in Shoreline on Thanksgiving. Click here to read more.

    Greg Johnson says when he saw the dealership's surveillance video, it felt all too familiar.

    “It looked exactly, exactly like what we went through, twice,” Johnson said. Johnson’s daughter, Shauna Hawthorne talked with KIRO7 when their family cars were attacked, but in surveillance video you also see someone shooting a liquid out a back window while someone else drives.

    “It's exact. And the dispersement was exact. Everything was exact,” Lindquist said. 

    Another similarity between the case in Shoreline and at the dealership – both victims were targeted multiple times.

    Wild West also shared surveillance video from 2016 of another incident. They say between the multiple attacks, the suspects have caused between a $500,000 to $600,000 in damage.

    “You kind of start to feel defeated, you know? You start to look over and see the extent of damage created over the 20 seconds it took them,” Jennifer said. 

    Both sets of victims say they feel law enforcement needs to do more.

    “I believe I'm getting an unsatisfactory response,” Lindquist said. “To this day, no detective has visited this site or visited me in respect to the damage done.” 

    “I don't think  we're being taken seriously enough here,” Johnson said. “I would really like to see somebody go to jail.”

    Seattle police say they are working with King County investigators to  determine if the two cases are connected.

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