A Summerland senior with mobility challenges found out her vehicle had been vandalized for the second time in two months but this time they wrote an offensive message on the side of her Kia Soul that is likely tied to a TikTok challenge.
Ashley Jestin said her mom walks with canes and mainly uses her older Kia to get around town and to volunteer at the thrift shop.
The mother-daughter first noticed the vandalism when they went to go to the Remembrance Day ceremony Saturday morning.
The vandals had smashed the passenger side window, smashed in the ignition and steering wheel column and, adding insult to injury wrote an offensive message about the ‘Kia Boys’ on the side of her vehicle using a Sharpie.
“My mother is in her late 70s. This is far too stressful for her to deal with. We were already collecting bottles to cover the high cost of living,” said Jestin.
The message on the side of the car says ‘Kia Boys failed f*&k your car b?$%*. Get something else.’
Jestin explains that the Kia Boys is a TikTok challenge that has people trying to steal Kia brand vehicles.
“It’s like the Tide pod challenge. It’s boredom and stupidity but that is the reality of social media like TikTok,” she said.
The trend involves stealing Kias and Hyundais using a specific method and posting the results on TikTok, Snapchat, and YouTube.
The TikTok challenge has been trending in the United States, but now it is has hit small town Summerland too.
Just two months ago, her mom had her back window smashed out by a rock while parked in her Summerland seniors housing complex.
She had to pay the $300 deductible to get it fixed. Money she didn’t have, said Jestin. She did a bottle drive to come up with funds, said her daughter. Almost everyone in her mom’s housing complex is on a fixed income and can’t afford to pay for damaged vehicles.
The parking lot at Parkdale Lodge has had numerous problems, according to Jestin.
“The parking lot for the housing complex has several lights that have burned out and have never been replaced. The lot also needs cameras.”
Her mom’s car has over 200,000 km on it so the vehicle may be a write off. But the mother and daughter won’t know anything until Tuesday because Monday is the Remembrance Day holiday.
The police and building managers have been made aware of the incident, she said.
“I fear this type of vandalism will be the norm now and we should all be more aware of suspicious activity and report anything and everything loudly. Take photos, share tips, get to know your neighbours and watch out for each other,” she added.