Tags top of vandalism list

West Metropolitan District’s Detective Senior Constable Mark Walker with seized spray cans and ink markers. Picture: Marcus Whisson www.communitypix.com.au d420399
West Metropolitan District’s Detective Senior Constable Mark Walker with seized spray cans and ink markers. Picture: Marcus Whisson www.communitypix.com.au d420399

During Operation Eraser last month, 20 criminal damage charges were laid relating to graffiti across Mirrabooka, Morley and Bayswater.

Det Snr Const Walker said graffiti was a huge issue across the district with one of the main hot spots at Charles Riley Reserve in North Beach.

‘The majority of graffiti is tagging with spray cans and paint pens which can cause significant damage,’ he said.

‘There’s a community of graffiti vandals who have a mentality of one-upmanship and competing to see who can tag in the most dangerous of places.

‘Everyone knows everyone in that community and knows one another’s tag.

‘They consider their tag sacred.’

Det Snr Const Walker said graffiti vandals got a thrill out of having their tags on display; with many using social media to reach more viewers.

‘However, social media is a great tool for police too,’ he said.

‘I’m surprised what crooks put on Facebook, it can be a way to identify vandals.’

With a significant graffiti problem among youth in the area, Det Snr Const Walker said in an effort to decrease the amount of graffiti, police officers needed to interact with young people.

‘Some graffiti can be artwork and used in a positive way to promote creativity,’ he said.

‘We’re always interested in hearing from community members who may have information about graffiti vandals or who have ideas of how to target the issue of graffiti damage.’