A man was arrested in downtown Palo Alto early Monday morning after he allegedly went on a window-smashing spree that damaged 12 businesses and caused damages in excess of $100,000, police said.
Palo Alto police received a report of a man who allegedly kicked in the door at SliderBar restaurant in the 300 block of University Avenue shortly before 4 a.m. The caller reported that other businesses in the immediate vicinity also had broken windows, according to a police press release.
Officers immediately responded and located the man on Bryant Street and Lytton Avenue, where other businesses had broken windows. They arrested the man without incident at 3:58 a.m., they said
The vandalized businesses were in a three-block area within University and Lytton avenues between Bryant and Cowper streets. They included SliderBar at 324 University Ave.; Siam Royal, 338 University Ave.; the Apple store, 340 University Ave.; Design Within Reach, 355 University Ave.; Union Bank, 400 University Ave.; Yayoi, 403 University Ave.; Lululemon Athletica, 432 University Ave.; Form Fitness, 445 Bryant St.; Apercen Partners LLC, 314 Lytton Ave.; and commercial properties at 255, 265, and 390 Lytton Ave.
None of the properties appeared to have been burglarized. Initial replacement costs from the various businesses are still being evaluated, but police estimated the total damage to be well in excess of $100,000.
The damage caused some businesses to temporarily shut down. The hardest hit were businesses located along the 300 and 400 blocks of University Avenue between Bryant and Cowper streets.
At Design Within Reach, large windows were shattered and a glass door was completely destroyed, leaving inch-thick cubes of aquamarine-colored safety glass covering the entryway. Apple's retail store also sustained significant damage. Multiple strikes by a heavy object left round indentations on the glass door. An elaborate spider web of cracks radiated along an entire window of the soaring glass-fronted edifice from the ground to the roofline.
Staff at Apple said the store would likely remain closed until at least noon or later while they awaited a replacement window.
At Siam Royal, owner Judy Vasa said the smashed front door would probably force the business to temporarily close for the safety of her patrons. She learned about the vandalism when she arrived at the store on Monday morning.
"It's so hard right now, and it keeps coming and coming," she said of setbacks such as loss of business from the pandemic and now the lost revenue from having to close the restaurant and replace the door. "We've been here 30 years, and this is the first time this has happened."
A jagged pane of glass hung from the SliderBar restaurant's front door. The eatery remained dark until late Monday morning when workers began sweeping up glass.
Union Bank lost an entire window but had removed all of the glass and was open for business. Likewise, Lululemon Athletica, which also sustained a cracked window, also welcomed customers inside its store on Monday.
Darlene Yaplee, a customer at Form Fitness, said she noticed the window was broken when she went for her workout. It was sad to see how much damage one person can do, she said.
"It's unfortunate. It's been a hard enough couple of years with COVID-19. Many of these are small businesses," she said.
Brycen Michael, who works at Form Fitness, said he arrived at 5:30 a.m. to find the window was broken. Police had told him they arrested someone. The business wouldn't be impacted by the broken window, he said.
Police believe the man, 37-year-old Joshua Sinclair Kahan of Palo Alto, used physical force or various items, such as rocks and trash can lids, to break the windows in a very short period of time. His motive for breaking the windows is unknown.
He was booked into the Santa Clara County Main Jail on suspicion of felony vandalism. Police also booked him for three outstanding arrest warrants: felony evading and misdemeanor battery from the Santa Clara County Sheriff's Office, and a misdemeanor violation of a court order from the Sunnyvale Department of Public Safety.
On Tuesday, Kahan was charged with 13 counts of felony vandalism. He was arraigned on the charges on Wednesday before Judge Brian Buckelew, who set bail at $200,000 in the vandalism case and another $200,000 on the felony evasion case, for which he had been recently placed on probation. In that case, Kahan evaded a police officer while driving with wanton disregard for the safety of persons or property, Santa Clara County Deputy District Attorney Steve Dal Porto said.
Anyone with information about these incidents is asked to call the Palo Alto Police Department's 24-hour dispatch center at 650-329-2413. Anonymous tips can be emailed to [email protected] or sent by text message or voicemail to 650-383-8984.
Editor's note: The name and photo of the defendant was added to the story on Feb. 2, after the district attorney filed charges in the case. Read our publishing guidelines.