Olympia hit with anti-police vandalism spree

OLYMPIA, Wash. -- Olympia police are looking for the vandals who smashed windows and painted profane graffiti throughout the city this weekend.

Abandoned buildings were the main targets, but the main message was anti-police and may be associated with anarchists.

Plywood now covers the scars of a a vandalism spree that left shattered glass and shattered nerves in Olympia.

"It's always upsetting," said building owner Evanne Howard, who claims it happens a couple of times a year. "It disturbs our tenants. It's like a personal affront and it's an expense."

A message sprayed on the wall of an abandoned building in the heart of the city said "(Expletive) the police." An anarchy symbol was painted was on either side. It has since been painted over.

"It's not something that we're unused to in this town," said Laura Wohl of Olympia Police. "We do have people who are connected to the anarchists movement that either do graffiti or other vandalism."

The building that once housed the Children's Museum was targeted with broken windows, which are now covered up. Seven bus shelters -- including one in the shadow of the state capitol -- were also attacked, the clear panels busted out.

All of this is happening as Olympia decorates the town for the holidays. The "Holiday Kids Tree" in the capitol rotunda was being trimmed on Monday in advance of Friday's opening gala.

Downtown businesses are all in competition to see who can spread the most cheer. That includes the buildings that were victimized by the vandals and graffiti suspects.

"Not a lot we can do to prevent that," said Sandy Dibernardo of Olympia Federal Savings. "It's the building next to the bank that was tagged with the profane message. "But we're working with the police and and they're doing what they can."