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...with a herring?

Well, the good news is, my crows cannot possibly be responsible for the ripped-out shrubbery.

The bad news is that we know this because it keeps happening

When I noticed that first bush had been pulled up, I heard from A at the office down at the other end of the bulding that they'd had a plant pulled out as well. Then sometime last week I came to work and there was another one of our plants pulled out, at the opposite end of our planter, and I noticed that in front of C's office next door (other direction from A) there was also a plant dug up. Duly reported to building manager again. (Side note: there isn't and has never been any food in those places, so no reason critters would be digging things up there.)

This morning I arrived and we have had a third bush torn out of our planter-- this one back at the same end as the first one, like someone's going back and forth taking one from each end. Nothing gone that I could see from C's this time; I didn't walk down to A's.

Called building manager; she said one of the condo owners in the building had already reported it, and they even have a partial time frame of when it happened. She's pretty much certain it's drunks wandering up from the pub next door (it's technically two doors down, but what's between us and them is a vacant plot of land overgrown with weeds.) She also says that the cost of the plants stolen so far is now up to more than $300, which she says is now more than a misdemeanor. (I guess? That's what she says. I don't really feel like looking up vandalism charges in this state.)

It's weird, but then who expects vandalism to make sense, really? I'm pretty sure it's not people stealing the plants to use in their own landscaping; the plants aren't dug up carefully. There are lots of broken-off roots in the soil, bits of broken stems on the pavement (along with LOTS of spilled dirt) and one of the plants next to the recently-stolen one is also badly broken. I think if you were stealing something to replant you'd dig up a little more carefully, wouldn't you?

I'd almost think this was some bizarre retaliation against our office for a claim we denied; we do occasionally get people so angry about a claim denial or a payment they think is too small that they threaten to "come down there" and beat up or shoot the adjuster (which is always fun because the adjusters work out of their homes, so the only physical address publicly available is the one I'm at.) I even had a slightly creepy call last week that seemed to be verifying our address. But since the other offices are getting it too, it's more likely just random vandalism. (And anyway what a weird form of retaliation that would be. "I'm SO MAD AT YOU that I'm going to... STEAL YOUR PLANTS! ONE... BY... ONE!  Soon you will be completely without plants! Your snails will have no shade!  Your windows will be slightly less pleasant to look out of!! MUAHAHAHAHAHAHA!"  Or maybe it's a really misguided attempt at oxygen deprivation. I think the maple trees have got my back there, though.

Whatever, I get to go to Disneyland pretty soon. :)
Originally posted at http://vixy.dreamwidth.org/786440.html.

Comments

( what 5 dormice said — feed your head )
scifantasy
Oct. 21st, 2013 04:48 pm (UTC)
I think your building manager may be working from outdated law. Second-degree malicious mischief is a felony, class C, but the target number to hit second-degree is $750. Then again, I think it used to be $250 until 2009, as I read the history.

http://apps.leg.wa.gov/RCW/default.aspx?cite=9A.48.080

Edited at 2013-10-21 04:48 pm (UTC)
ladyat
Oct. 21st, 2013 04:57 pm (UTC)
Depending on what kind of plant it is, this very well could be someone stealing plants for their own greedy landscaping needs. Established plants don't come cheap these days. Some plants require delicate treatment, but those aren't usually used by landscaping companies. A grubby low-life gardener could easily saunter by in the wee hours of the morning with a shovel and commit a walk-by theft in less than a minute.
ladymondegreen
Oct. 21st, 2013 06:19 pm (UTC)
Clearly the drunks have been playing the new Plants vs. Zombies game and are coming by to collect ammunition.
muddlewait
Oct. 21st, 2013 07:41 pm (UTC)
Yeah, that's... weird. You're close to it, so your guesses will be better than anyone else's. Maybe resentful drunken gardeners with rejected claims?

It's the fact that they came back multiple times to the exact same place that I find strange. Like they have pretty strong reason to believe that there are no cameras there, or at least that no one will do anything to stop, charge, or even identify them.

Heh -- who does your company hire to replace the plants when they disappear?
lemmozine
Oct. 21st, 2013 07:55 pm (UTC)
Sounds to me like they need to install a 3 million dollar video alarm system to protect against losing $300. Or just keep track of losses until they meet their insurance deductible.
( what 5 dormice said — feed your head )

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