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Democrat Photo by Fred Stabbert III

JEFFERSONVILLE ATTORNEY JAY Epstein points to the impact mark of a BB on his office window on Main Street. Epstein and several other downtown businesspeople found evidence of vandalism all over the village this past weekend.

Businesses Cope
With Vandalism

By Jeanne Sager
JEFFERSONVILLE — May 13, 2003 – So much for a renaissance – Jeffersonville just got pushed a step backward.
One of the leading towns for revitalization in the county was sent reeling Saturday – vandals have ruined much of the work done in the past few years to bring the village into the future.
Store owners came into town early morning to find windows blown out, holes in their moldings and the town in a general disarray.
During the late hours of Friday evening or early hours of Saturday morning, someone apparently took a BB gun out and used it to shoot up the town.
They got about seven windows at Michelangelo’s, the Italian restaurant on Main Street – that will cost at least $4,000 to $5,000 to fix, according to co-owner Angelo D’Abbraccio.
They took out windows at Ted’s Restaurant and Dragon City. Pat’s Car Wash and Laundromat was heavily hit, and word on the street is that the criminals headed up the road to shoot at some cars in the parking lot of the Villa Roma Resort, then over to Callicoon Center.
“I think it’s disgusting,” said Gus Kabakci, owner of Ted’s Restaurant, which lost its large glass window that diners usually peer out to watch the goings-on in town during their meal.
“The merchants of Jeff, actually everybody, not just the merchants, try to make this town as beautiful as possible, which I think it is,” he said. “There’s a few hoodlums, or kids, who have destroyed our work.
“It’s terrible.”
His own restaurant will suffer for at least 20 days – Kabakci is dealing with his insurance company, but he’s been told it will take that long to replace the expanded window.
Pet Welsh who owns the laundromat estimates there were 14 to 15 shots taken through his windows. The cost of the replacement isn’t his main concern – that morning he lost a lot of business because no one could do their Saturday laundry run with glass all over the floor.
“I couldn’t have people slipping and sliding and cutting themselves,” he said. “It’s tough for a small businessman trying to make ends meet.”
The vandals also got two windows at Jay Epstein’s law office right down the street from Ted’s.
“It’s just senseless,” Epstein said. “You would think they had other things to do – something more productive.”
The police officers who responded to various calls for help – some went out to the State Police and others to the Sheriff’s Department – were not available for comment.
However, Epstein said he understands they are questioning a suspect.

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