Friday, July 30, 2010

Graffiti arrests

On short notice yesterday, I was asked to come over to the Mayor’s weekly news conference, where graffiti abatement was on the agenda. William Carver of the Health Department, who coordinates the City’s graffiti abatement efforts, was the main attraction, but the Mayor also wanted to mention arrests for vandalism involving graffiti. 

I had to scramble to put some data together, and I found it rather interesting.  So far this year, 445 graffiti cases have been reported to the police.  Of those, 69 cases have been cleared with an arrest—quite a few more than I would have expected.  Some of those arrested, however, were prolific offenders whose arrest solved several cases. 

The total number of arrests was 23, five of whom were adults, the remainder juveniles.  The ages range from 10 to 57.  A third of them were 14 year olds.  I have no easy way of knowing what has become of the cases that were referred to juvenile court, but for the five arrests that went through adult court, the outcomes are as follows:  one case is still pending, the offender has been convicted and is awaiting sentencing on September 10; one case resulted in a 30 day jail sentence (note: do not tag a church!); three cases resulted in $250 fines, and two of the three defendants who were fined have failed to pay their fines, resulting in the issuance of arrest warrants for that pair.

Mr. Carver is pretty familiar with the various tagging crews who are active in the Lincoln area, and he has a database of graffiti that is searchable by tag.  The purpose of the news conference was for the Mayor to highlight the City’s success in keeping up with this crime, and William is the main cog that makes that apparatus successful. 


Max. P. Bell said...

Tagging is a volunteer service by the criminal community to warn the rest of us to stay off their turf. Lincoln's anti-graffiti program tells these scum we don't concede ANY part of our town to them.

Can we see a picture of the fifty year old loser and samples of his trash "art"?

Anonymous said...

I'd like to see that 57 year old's mug shot too, or at least see his name.

Tom Casady said...


He used a Sharpie on July 9th to write the word "Zoro" on the Windstream Communications building downtown, right as Officer Scott Parker and Ben Seeman rode by in full uniform on their police bicycles.


He looks terrible (leading the hard life). I'm not willing to put his mug shot on my blog, though. He's been cited for ten offenses so far this year, and jailed on five separate occasions.

Anonymous said...

If the fifty year old artist meant to get people talking about him or his art, he sure got Max's attention and Mr. Casady's! So you could say it was successful art!

Former Deputy D said...

The term 57 yr old brought back a memory. What was the end result of Gary Roth's (aka Smiley) investigation after his bones were found in Salt Creek, May 2010? Is this still an open case, I don't remember.

Tom Casady said...


Still open, and still anxious for information.

Steve said...

At least he didn't carve a Z in the building with a sword!

Anonymous said...

What kind of databases on Tattoos are available to LPD? When I fist started in corrections in 1989 one of the intelligence officers was putting together a database of various criminal gangs and their tattoos. I never could understand why someone who is considering crime as a career would want to add a mark to his body that identifies him as a member of a criminal organization.

Gun Nut

ARRRRG!!!! said...

Stay off of my turf Max!

Anonymous said...

William is the best! I know a few of the juveniles that were caught tagging are now looking for volunteer service hours and have been painting over other graffiti.