Police have arrested the man they believe slashed tires on dozens of cars in Sheepshead Bay and Midwood on Dec. 14.
Eduard Ivashcenko, a 21-year-old man from Sheepshead Bay, was arrested on Dec. 15 for allegedly slashing the tires on at least 71 vehicles — and authorities say that number could increase if more victims step forward to press charges.
“Some of them are probably afraid to make reports,” said an NYPD spokesman.
Since the vandalism occurred in predominantly Jewish neighborhoods, some had feared that the slasher was specifically targeting Jews, but authorities say that is not the case.
“It is not a hate crime,” said the spokesman.
Police say Ivashcenko, who is Jewish, targeted vehicles from Quentin Road to Avenue S in Midwood and E. 17th Street to Bedford Avenue in Sheepshead Bay between midnight and 2 am.
One of the women who was victimized said she was shocked when she saw her car — but she was appalled when she realized multiple tires in her neighborhood were destroyed.
“It was flat, and then I found out when I went to the tire place that it was slashed — all over my neighborhood,” said Liz Simonello, who lives on E. 23rd Street, and shelled out more than $100 to replace her set of wheels.
A local elected official applauded the neighborhood for working together with the police to catch the suspect — and he said residents who were affected by the incident should report their story to the police.
“I want to commend residents for providing the NYPD access to security footage that assisted the NYPD in tracking the suspect,” said Councilman Chaim Deutsch (D–Sheepshead Bay). “This incident highlights the importance of reporting every crime to the police, and the value of police and community working together.”
Police say Ivashcenko is being charged with criminal possession of a weapon and criminal mischief.
Ivashcenko told police that he went on the tire-slashing rampage after an argument with his mother, according to authorities.
Ivashcenko’s lawyer could not be reached for comment.