You park your car, you go inside your home and when you look out the window you see what looks like a white powder drifting by. What was it and does the company who sprayed it have to pay for the damage? It’s why people called Help Me Howard with Patrick Fraser.

Mike Colangelo has a sense of humor and starts joking as soon as you ask his last name.

Mike Colangelo: “It is Italian, that means walks with angels. I’m a good guy. Let me tell you.”

Paige is his neighbor, a close neighbor, she says.

Paige Kalika: “Yeah. What are you talking about? Every time I’m yelling about the Celtics.”

And together the two of them have been painted into a corner.

Paige Kalika: “I came out to show that they were spray painting and personally got hit with a ton of spray paint in the face. It was on my clothes.”

The storage facility next door was being spray painted on a windy day. Neighbors hollered at them.

Paige said they kept spraying.

Paige Kalika: “They were on this whole side that was facing us. They were doing up and down, the whole coat to the building.”

Mike came out of his apartment.

Mike Colangelo: “And they were shooting it and you could just see it coming like, like snow.”

The workers finally stopped, but the damage was done.

One person, Paige, and four vehicles hit by the paint spray.

Paige Kalika: “Kind of on everything. It’s all in all my trim, it’s on my mirrors, it’s on my windows, you know, it’s even on my rims.”

Mike tried to remove the paint from their cars. Didn’t work.

Mike Colangelo: “This is good stuff. Whatever they’re using, it’s a sealer base. You can’t scratch it out with your nails. That’s how tough it is.”

The spraying company sent someone out to try and remove the paint.

Mike says they couldn’t, so he asked for the paint company for their insurance to file a claim.

Mike Colangelo: “And he says, ‘Oh, they’re not going to give you their certificate of insurance.'”

Paige does not want to be left with a blue car that’s not completely blue anymore.

Paige Kalika: “I don’t like driving it around with white speckles looking like a half dalmatian car.”

Mike is aggravated a company refuses to pay for the damage or reveal their insurance company.

Paige Kalika: “Like they’re going to go away and wash their hands of this and, what, leave us stuck holding the bag?”

And neither of them wants this paint job to get whitewashed.

Paige Kalika: “I am frustrated. It’s been a long time.”

Mike Colangelo: “And it’s been months.”

Paige Kalika: “The same with the white car.”

Mike Colangelo: “Months.”

Mike laughs, but this is serious. So, legally, Howard, if someone is spray painting and damages your property, do they have to pay?”

Howard Finkelstein, 7News legal expert: “If they allow the spray paint to come on your property and damage it, it’s negligence, and they have to pay you or turn it over to their insurance company, and by law, they are required to reveal their insurance information to you. If they don’t have insurance, sue them in small claims court.”

I spoke to the owner of the commercial painting company, he said his people were careless and at fault.

He said they wanted to get the paint off the cars, but Mike wouldn’t let them finish the job.

Not true, Mike said finally the painting company did what we all wanted and turned it over to their insurance company.

Paige Kalika: “They dragged their feet forever, but your perseverance paid off, and both me and Mike got taken care of, so I do want to thank you guys for all your help.”

Both Paige and Mike each got about $3,000 for the damage to their cars after their call to Help Me Howard.

Mike Colangelo: “If I didn’t call you guys, I’d never got it, so there’s your plug.”

Thanks for that plug, Mike.

Now, if someone who damages your property won’t pay and doesn’t have insurance, remember, your car insurance might cover it. That’s an option or contact us, and let us do the work for you.

Had a brush with a problem? Ready to paint a rosier picture? Contact us. We can’t create a masterpiece, but we can draw up a solution.

With this Help Me Howard, I’m Patrick Fraser, 7News.

CONTACT HELP ME HOWARD:
Email: helpmehoward@wsvn.com
Reporter: Patrick Fraser at pfraser@wsvn.com
Miami-Dade: 305-953-WSVN
Broward: 954-761-WSVN

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