His Hummer only lasted five days. On Monday, two masked men were seen taking a bat to every window, knifing each tire and scratching a message into the body — "For The Environ."
"The thought of somebody vandalizing it never crossed my mind," Groves, who lives in an upscale northwest Washington neighborhood with his mother, told the Washington Post. "I've kind of been in shock."
Now, as Groves ponders what to do with the remains of his $38,000 SUV, he has been the target of a number of people who have driven by the crime scene in his upscale neighborhood and glared at him in smug satisfaction, the Post reports.
"I'd say one in five people who come by have that 'you-got-what-you-deserve' look," said friend Andy Sexton, 27, who is visiting from Arkansas and has been helping Groves deal with fallout from the crime, told the Post.
Neighbors admit they don't like gas-guzzling Hummers. But they aren't condoning the vandalism.
Neighbor Lucille Liem, 37, who owns a Prius hybrid, told the Post that a common sentiment in the neighborhood is that large vehicles are impractical and a strain on the Earth — and Hummers in particular are a symbol of consumer excess.
"The neighborhood in general is very concerned with the environment," said Liem, whose Prius gets about 48 miles a gallon compared with the Hummer's 14 miles a gallon. "It's more liberal leaning. It's ridiculous to be driving a Hummer."
Liem quickly told the Post that she does not condone violence.
Police say they haven't seen vandalism so severe with a clear political message in recent years. Investigators say they don't have many leads.
"I'm worried about what I do now," Groves told the Post. "If I get it fixed, do I put it back in the same spot three weeks from now?"