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Doggy day care reopening delayed after car crashes into building

Camp Bow Wow in Sarasota had been closed for renovations since May and was set to reopen on July 6.

SARASOTA, Fla. — A driver is facing charges of driving under the influence with property damage after police said he crashed into a doggy day care center in Sarasota.

The owner, who now has to clean up the mess, told 10 Tampa Bay this couldn't have come at a worse time for the business.

Sarasota Police said the driver first crashed into a nearby light pole and then the vehicle careened into the business. There were reportedly no employees or pets inside the building, but ongoing renovations to the business have now been delayed.

"It is a setback, it's quite a setback," said Anita Sahoo, owner of Camp Bow Wow. "We're not making any money and bills are still there that need to be paid and the contract for construction is now a little bit more money," 

Law enforcement said the truck crashed into the business near 17th Street around 1:30 a.m. Sunday.

The security alarm system alerted Sahoo, who had only been away for a few days in Philadelphia visiting her mother.

When she arrived at her business Monday morning, the sight of the day care was not what she had expected.

"I'm just shocked," Sahoo said. "I thought maybe a robbery or like maybe burglary or the window smashed in but I didn't expect to see car parts in there." 

Camp Bow Wow has been temporarily closed since May for the renovations and was supposed to open with the upgrades on July 6.

"We were making an awesome Camp Bow Wow, updating all these things and new flooring, new cabinets, all the stuff," she said.

Those plans are now on hold as Sahoo, who lives in Las Vegas, and her landlord coordinate appraisals and repairs between insurance providers and contractors.

Authorities said it has increased enforcement because more people are driving vehicles while impaired.

"They're all over the city and all different times, even rush-hour at five o'clock after work and also three o'clock in the morning," said Sarasota Police Captain Robert Armstrong.

According to police, recent data showed DUI and DWI arrests have doubled since last year with 77 arrests so far in 2022 compared to the 80 arrests for the whole of last year.

"When you're impaired, you may think that you're fine, so you're getting behind the wheel and you're trying to make it home, you're trying to go somewhere else, and then, in reality, you're really not so you have those alternatives to not drive," said Armstrong.

"I am so thankful that nobody was in here. That can all be repaired and that can be all taken care of," Sahoo said.

Along with stepped-up enforcement, law enforcement are urging drivers to be responsible especially with the holiday weekend coming up. 

Police advise people to have someone in their group who is not partaking in any drinking be the designated driver for the outing or just call a ride share from companies like Uber or Lyft.

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