BY REBECCA BENNETT — A thief stole a tow truck from a repair shop just outside the City of Hyattsville, according to the Hyattsville City Police Department (HCPD), and then crashed into the greenhouse of the former Marché Florist, which is the future home of the arts non-profit Art Works.
While responding to a call in the 4800 block of Rhode Island Avenue for an assault in progress at approximately 2:55 p.m., police said they saw the truck had crashed into the side of the building. The thief fled the scene of the crash, according to HCPD, and was apprehended on the alternate Route 1 bridge. The two incidents were related, police said.
The stolen tow truck belonged to locally-based G&A Auto Transport. According to the son of the truck’s owner, the truck was just dropped off that morning to have its brakes worked on when it was stolen. He said it was their only truck. He was visibly shaken by the events that transpired.
All of this unfolded while Art Works staff members were just down the road at the Hyattsville Arts Festival leading children’s crafts. Staff and board members on the scene said the incident was shocking, unbelievable and devastating. As Alley Cat Towing pulled away the tow truck, glass from the greenhouse was heard crashing to the ground.
“I’m very heartbroken,” Art Works Board Secretary Teresa Thiemann said. According to Thiemann, she just walked by the building on the way to the art festival. She was with another board member and talked about the potential use for that space on the walk.
Photo courtesy Rebecca Bennett.