Archived Story

Man arrested for vandalizing city hall

Published 10:12am Friday, August 8, 2014

While local citizens were inside City Hall making their voices heard by voting in the primary election, one person used another avenue to express himself Tuesday evening, according to the Dowagiac Police Department.

Quentell Watson
Quentell Watson

Quentell Watson, 21, of Peoria, Illinois, was arrested on Tuesday on suspicions of vandalizing city and police department property. He was arraigned in Cass County Court, and has been charged with two felony counts of malicious destruction of police property and one misdemeanor count of malicious destruction of buildings.

According to police, Watson arrived outside Dowagiac City Hall, located on Front Street, around 6:30 p.m. Once there, he smashed in the windshield of one of the police vehicles parked in the rear parking lot with a hammer, before proceeding to break one of the glass double doors at the rear entrance to the main office.

The vandalism was immediately noticed by city employees working inside as well as by several eyewitnesses on the nearby sidewalk.

Several officers present inside the building were notified, and they scrambled outside to find the assailant. After asking the eyewitnesses about the identity of the person they seen inflict the damage, the police officers apprehended Watson, who was found a short distance away at the intersection of Main Street and Pennsylvania Avenue.

He immediately dropped the hammer when order to do so by police, and didn’t resist his arrest.

“He was very cooperative when they took him into custody, following the officers orders,” said Director of Public Safety Steven Grinnewald.

The man refused to answer any questions from the officers, the police chief said.

“We still have no clue as to what his motive was, because he won’t tell us,” Grinnewald said.

Upon further assessment of the scene, authorities suspect that Watson also damaged part of a transformer box outside the building, as they found dents along the venting.

Police have determined that Watson has a grandmother who lives in Dowagiac, and they believe the man was living with her at the time of his arrest. They also found that he has prior criminal record in Illinois.

Watson is being held in Cass County Jail, with bail set at $5,000.

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