CORNWALL, Ontario – The owner of a tow truck service that now teeters on demise says someone, or some group, is specifically targeting his business for attacks.
For the second time in six months City Tow and Recovery has had its vehicle torched – this time in an early morning blaze on Monday.
The $20,000 rig is a complete loss, and owner Vance Desaulniers said he’s afraid to open another towing business.
“Some action needs to be taken,” he said in an interview. “I’ve never been afraid to be in business before.
“It is 100 per cent arson. We’re afraid to open a business in Cornwall – and that is ridiculous.”
Cornwall police confirm they are investigating an arson, and Const. Melanie Labelle said witness statements from neighbours have been collected and forensic data has been recovered from the crime scene.
The fire was sparked around 4 a.m. Monday when the tow truck went up in flames in the driveway of Bill Fell, who operates the tow service on behalf of Desaulniers.
The fear among many now is that the attacks continue – and the next time the fire could spread to a nearby home.
Fell and his wife have children.
“To my knowledge it’s the fifth tow truck (attack) in the last three years,” said Desaulniers.
Labelle confirmed there have been other incidents involving tow trucks in the city over a similar period of time, but added there has been difficulty finding enough evidence to link them all together.
Desaulniers has his own theory about what’s going on.
“I would say it’s jealousy from a competitor – it has to be,” he said. “That’s all we can point it to.”
Desaulniers said he’s unsure if his business will open – and even unsure if he wants to.
He said his insurance company will likely have issues with him filing yet another claim for a total loss – and there is the looming concern about another attack resulting in injuries or even a fatality.
“We face a couple of hurdles,” he said.