STRONGSVILLE, Ohio – Police in Strongsville are asking for the public’s help in connection with an incident that happened Wednesday, March 13 around 4 p.m. on Interstate 71 North between State Route 82 and the Ohio Turnpike.
A driver, who is currently a substitute teacher in the Strongsville school district, said that a car pulled up next to hers and began next to her vehicle.
“She felt uncomfortable because it was slowing and speeding up,” said police Chief Jim Kobak.
According to the woman, the passenger side window of the suspect’s car was then opened and an object was thrown out. Police say it could’ve been a brick or a rock and it severely damaged the passenger’s side of her windshield.
The car was described as a late-model, dark blue, “low-rider” type vehicle with tinted windows and rust on the bottom of the passenger door panel.
The timing of the incident is alarming to both police and people on both sides of the teachers strike.
Several of the striking teachers have also had their cars damaged.
“We’ve had several teachers whose cars have been egged, tires slashed, a spike in a tire, cars being keyed,” said Tracy Linscott, the Strongsville teacher’s union president.
The substitute asked for anonymity but Linscott says any suggestion that a teacher was involved is ludicrous, because they are on the picket lines all day and are too worried about their own safety.
“We don’t know who’s doing it,” said Linscott. “I know a lot of people are very upset with what’s going on and it’s possible people on the outside are just upset with what’s happening.”
Extra police officers are now positioned near the strikers and the schools, and teachers say they try to walk in pairs and not go anywhere alone.
The driver wasn’t injured and no one else has been harmed. Teachers say they’d like to keep it that way, on both sides.
“We just want everybody to be safe. We can do this without anyone getting hurt,” said Linscott.
Nearly 400 Strongsville Education Association members have been on strike since March 4.
Anyone who witnessed this incident or may have information related to the identity of the suspect(s) or vehicle is asked to call Strongsville police at 440-580-3230.