DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Many Dallas drivers have been extra cautious behind the wheel lately, thanks to a so-called “nail bandit.” Police say he’s been blanketing high-traffic intersections with roofing nails, causing damage and fear.
Brooke Bremer heard the sound of time, money, and convenience seeping out of her front right tire.
“I was just running errands with my son the other day, and we came home, and we pulled into the garage, and he said, ‘Mom, what is that noise?'” she said.
By the next morning, her tire was deflated, and she was calling a tow truck. She found out one of her recent stops had been frequented by the nail bandit.
“The whole thing ended up taking half a day to get it done,” she said. “It’s just a big nuisance.”
Neighbors have reported at least 30 incidences over the last six weeks, including 13 in Highland Park, four in University Park, and many more on social media.
In Preston Hollow, around Hillcrest Road and Northwest Highway, neighbors spotted the nails and started picking them up – collecting 325 of them – only to have more thrown into the street.
“There were hundreds, and they were clumped together, and it was difficult because we had to extract them from the asphalt because the weather was hot,” said Laila Dolle, one of the neighbors who helped. “It feels very indiscriminate,” she said.
After weeks of concern and frustration, police in Plano arrested 45-year-old Kevin Genter on Oct. 24 in connection with a separate deadly conduct incident that happened on Oct. 22 at the Toyota Headquarters located in Plano.
During the Oct. 22 incident, witnesses said they heard gunshots and saw a suspect drive away. The suspects vehicle matched a vehicle that dropped several nails throughout the Toyota Headquarters parking lot on Oct. 20 and 21, according to Toyota’s security.
Highland Park and University Park Police confirm he’s a suspect, with a similar MO, description, and vehicle to what witnesses have seen.
Drivers said they hope he’s off the streets for the sake of safety.
“It’s just so dangerous. We use these streets every day,” said Dolle.
“This guy has really done some damage and just made a major pain for the people in our community,” said Bremer.