Vandals hit center for homeless teens

SANTA FE (KRQE) – Thieves stole a car from an outreach center for homeless teens after trashing the place, but police said the culprits didn’t stop there.

Police said the suspects took that stolen car on a joy ride and continued their path of destruction.

The Youth Shelters & Family Services’ Street Outreach Resource Center in Santa Fe provides everything from food  to emotional support for homeless and at-risk teens in need.

But Friday, the center finds itself in a time of need.

“It is shocking to see the amount of damage and heartbreaking because we know there are so many kids that rely on us,” said David Block, the executive director of Youth Shelters & Family Services.

Boards block the Resource Center’s entrance while signs let people know how they can help get the place back open again.

This scene was a mess after vandals broke in Wednesday night, smeared sunblock all over the electronics, food thrown everywhere and even feces left on the bathroom floor and bathtub.

The letters, “SSL” were written in orange marker on the refrigerator, police said.

The Resource Center’s car is totaled.

Police said the vandals stole it, hit two other cars while driving through the neighborhood and even tore through a nearby park.

“That is the worst when everyone else has to pay for some other people just acting out,” said neighbor Bram Meehan.

Neighbors aren’t too happy to see the caution tape over broken fences and netting at the field.

Meanwhile workers will be busy cleaning the Resource Center for at least a few weeks, but Block said he doesn’t hate the culprits.

“We can only feel compassion for them and, upset certainly about their behavior, but compassion for the state of mind they must be in to want to create this kind of havoc,” Block said.

He estimated it will take about $30,000 to replace the stolen car and clean up the Resource Center.

Police said a witness saw two men in the stolen car.

Officers believe the suspects are teens because they were able to get in to the center from a very small window.

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