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Another Dibs Attack? The Owner of This Car Wonders Why She Was Targeted

By Darryl Holliday | February 14, 2015 7:27am | Updated on February 16, 2015 8:51am

LOGAN SQUARE —  A Humboldt Park woman's car was left in shambles this week, and she wonders if the culprits did it because they thought she violated "dibs."

Ashley Mater, 25, went to get into her gray Nissan couple to drive to work Monday only to find the inside of the car torn to pieces where it was parked near the corner of Hamlin and Wrightwood avenues in Logan Square, said her sister, 21-year-old Meghan Mater.

Meghan Mater said her sister noticed her windshield wiper was sticking up and something looked strange about her windows.

“It looked like frosted ice, then she realized her windows were shattered and blown out in the back.

“When she looked even closer she saw the steering wheel was blown out,” she continued. “There were little microchips everywhere, the whole dashboard was pushed out.”

But it didn’t stop there. Mater’s door handle was broken off and later retrieved near pieces of her windshield, some of which were found as far as 12 feet away. The windows were blown from the inside out, Meghan Mater said.

She said several neighbors said they heard a loud explosion around 2 a.m. Monday, right before two or three men jumped into a small coupe and sped away.

Ashley Mater was at a complete loss for answers, her sister said, but the empty spot she had parked her car in the night before held at least one clue: A set of chairs appeared to have been kicked to the snowless curb nearby.

And that left the Mater sisters guessing the damage had something to do with “dibs,” a Chicago tradition that has all-too-often led to ugly encounters. An insurance investigation is underway to determine the cause of the damage, but the Maters put an early estimate of the cost at about $5,000.

“She’s not fearful of going back and parking her car, she’s just kind of freaked out that it would happen and doesn’t understand why,” Mater said. “I’m just hoping that dibs goes away.”

Her sister hadn’t removed any items from the open spot when she parked, Mater said, but all indicators point toward retaliation for dibs that might have been violated earlier in the day.

“It’s one of those things you never think will happen to you — hopefully it doesn’t happen again,” Mater said.

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