Downtown graffiti suspects tagged by Facebook pics, charged

Posted: August 11, 2011 in Uncategorized
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About 30 businesses in the Plaza area were tagged by graffiti vandals last week according to police. From left, Carl Aschenbrener and Robert Spitz, a San Francisco Street landlord whose buildings were hit, talk with Steven Almanzar, graffiti supervisor for the city, on Thursday about how the city will proceed with the graffiti removal. (File photo by Clyde Mueller/The New Mexican)

Santa Fe Police Lt. Marvin Paulk says an anonymous tip and a Facebook picture led police to bring charges against two 13-year-old boys and one 16-year-old connected to last weeks vandalism/graffiti spree around the Plaza.

Thirty downtown businesses were victimized, police say.

Here is Paulk’s news release (and there will be a story by Tom Sharpe in tomorrow’s New Mexican):

On August 10, 2011, the Santa Fe Police Department identified three (3) juvenile suspects responsible for the extensive vandalism (graffiti) that occurred on downtown businesses on August 4, 2011.  Two of the juveniles are 13 years of age and one is 16 years of age.

An anonymous tip lead Officer Philip Fernandez and Detective Paul Joye to a social networking site where they identified graffiti consistent with graffiti that was discovered on numerous businesses in and around the downtown area. Using the information from the site, the three suspects were identified.  Two of the juveniles were interviewed and gave consistent accounts of their involvement in the vandalism. A third suspect has been identified and will be interviewed in the near future.

The three juveniles are also being investigated for a number of other vandalism cases throughout the city. The victims on those incidents include the Santa Fe Rodeo grounds and the downtown office of Senator Jeff Bingaman.

A collaborative effort with Santa Fe Beautiful, City of Santa Fe Parks and Recreation, The downtown merchants, City of Santa Fe Anti Graffiti Coordinator Jennifer Munoz and the Santa Fe Police Department resulted in the gathering of information and the expeditious removal of the graffiti.

The City of Santa Fe is currently contemplating expanding the use of video cameras in areas susceptible to graffiti in an effort to reduce that type of vandalism.

The three juveniles identified in this case have not been formally charged. The Santa Fe Police Department is working the First Judicial District Attorneys Office and New Mexico State Juvenile Probation and Parole to ensure that the teenagers are appropriately charged.

And here is a link to last week’s article by Phaedra Haywood in The New Mexican:


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