The Criminal Mind: Vandals ‘Can’t Resist’ Portable Toilets


Of all the mysteries of the criminal mind, one bothers Dave Holm the most: Why do people burn portable toilets? “I know, I know – they think it’s funny,” Holm, president of the largest toilet-rental business in Minneapolis-St. Paul, told the Pioneer Press. It’s summer–the time of year when Holm sends out truckloads of spiffy new toilets only to see them return as piles of ash and melted plastic. Holm expects to lose 35 units this year, in addition to about 500 others tipped over by vandals or windstorms.

Ruined biffies sit in Holm’s back lot like corpses in a morgue. He knelt beside a half-melted $2,000 toilet and examined the sparklers that set off the fire. “I just don’t get the humor here,” he muttered. “It’s kind of pathetic.” Halloween is the worst time of year, with the Fourth of July running a close second.


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