Graffiti crimes are on the rise this summer and several teens have been arrested in separate instances in the past month for defacing various properties in Glen Cove.
Most recently, on July 22, Glen Cove police officers arrested four Glen Cove youths (ages 15 to 17) after they were caught spray painting the wall on Crescent Beach Road in Glen Cove.
On July 17, school officials notified the Glen Cove Police Department that the wood fence behind the middle school football field was spray painted with graffiti by unknown persons.
On June 29, Glen Cove police arrested four defendants for spray painting the beach wall at the Welwyn Preserve. Three of those defendants live in Roslyn Heights and the other resides in Albertson.
There has been recent graffiti depicting the letter “A” with a circle and slash through it, which has been observed around the Glen Cove area.
“Graffiti is the etching, painting, covering, drawing upon or otherwise placing of a mark upon public or private property with the intent to damage such property,” said Glen Cove Detective Lieutenant John Nagle. “Those who think it’s okay to damage someone else’s property should think twice. Graffiti is a crime and it’s classified as a class ‘A’ misdemeanor, which is punishable up to one year of incarceration.”
He noted that anyone who is arrested for graffiti will also be charged with criminal mischief, for intentionally damaging the property of another and will be charged with the possession of the paint or substance used in making the graffiti (possession of graffiti instruments).
“Often times even after the defendant has been convicted of the crime of graffiti, the court will also order the defendant to reimburse the injured party for damage they inflicted on the property,” said Nagle.
He said that if the cost to repair the damaged property exceeds $250, this will escalate the charge to criminal mischief in the third degree, a class “E” felony, which could result in up to four years of incarceration.
“Apparently, some youths discover what they think is a good site for their graffiti and communicate that with other like-minded individuals over the Internet,” said Nagle. “That would explain why we are getting out of town graffiti artists defacing the property at the Welwyn Preserve in Glen Cove.”
“I support the actions of the Glen Cove Police Department as I have no tolerance for graffiti vandalism,” said Glen Cove Mayor Reggie Spinello in a statement. “The individuals responsible for these crimes should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law and be held financially accountable for damages caused by their illegal activities.”
If anyone observes graffiti taking place, the police advise to not intervene, but to get a description of the vandals and the location and immediately notify the Glen Cove Police Department. If anyone has information regarding graffiti like the recent letter “A” graffiti, notify Nagle at 516-676-1002 or leave an anonymous tip on firstname.lastname@example.org.