At least three downtown Bakersfield businesses were targeted by a vandal or vandals this week. A popular café and shoe store were among the businesses that fell victim.
The Blue Oak Coffee Roasting shop at the intersection of 20th St. and G St. in downtown Bakersfield was targeted early Thursday morning. One of its windows was shattered with an object. this morning, owner Cynthia Price was hard at work, preparing coffee and serving customers.
“We’re getting tired of it. We deal with a lot of issues being downtown,” said Price. “If a business is having a hard time, stuff like this could put them under, and that’s a shame for downtown because we need it. We have good businesses and good people here.”
“This whole glass has to be replaced. We’re talking about $1800.”
Also overnight, the Guarantee Shoe Center fell pray. Someone smashed the store’s window with a brick. The owner, Rosco Rolnick and his family, have owned this business for more than six decades.
“66 years and I’ve had five broken windows. In the last 90 days, twice now it’s been this window right here,” the Vietnam War veteran said while pointing to the smashed window “Business is tough. I know it’s tough for the people breaking the windows, but don’t take it out on the people when they are barely making it,” he continued.
Newly-obtained surveillance video from 1 a.m. Monday shows a man approach a downtown doctor’s office only to throw an object at the window. He then casually walked away. He and possibly others remain on the loose, but impacted business owners say they will carry on.
“It’s frustrating, it’s challenging, but in 66 years, I have learned you roll with the punches, it is what it is, and business goes on,” Rolnick said.
Priced shared a similar sentiment.
“We’re committed to being downtown. We plan to stay. We’re going to keep doing what we do.”
Price and Rolnick were in touch with the Bakersfield Police Department. KGET placed a call to BPD, but did not hear back by news time.