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Friday, February 25, 2011

Graffiti Arrest Made By Roosevelt Island Public Safety Department - Suspect Claimed Responsibility For Over 100 Tags On Roosevelt Island

Received the following message from Roosevelt Island Public Safety Director Keith Guerra:

On February 23, 2011, our Department made a great arrest catching a Graffiti Artist who was defacing property in Roosevelt Landings.

{Name Redacated} (17), who has been residing with his girlfriend in Building 540, was apprehended after a short pursuit and claimed responsibility for more than 100 tags of graffiti on the island. His tag of "ISK8" which means I skate, has been spotted in several places throughout Roosevelt Landings and throughout the island to Coler Hospital.

{Name Redacted} was also wanted by the NYPD and was also subsequently arrested by the NYPD Vandals Unit as well.

He was booked at the 114th Pct and processed to Manhattan Criminal Court. Following his arraignment there, he will be transported to Queens Criminal Court to answer the charges made by the NYPD.

The PSD Officers are to be commended for catching this mischievous individual and for hopefully putting an end to his damaging of property here on Roosevelt Island.
I redacted the name of the suspect.

113 comments :

Anonymous said...

About time Public Safety catches someone in the act of vandalism, instead of chasing cars that make u-turns on the Island even though they always do that themselves. Now maybe they can catch the person or persons who break the lobby door's glass window every week.

Anonymous said...

Or the people who let their dogs (we can only hope it's dogs) relieve themselves in the stairwells.

Anonymous said...

Correction: graffiti vandal, not "artist."

Anonymous said...

When is RIOC going to clear the existing grafitti? There is grafitti on the light house. I can't believe how terrible this looks.

Anonymous said...

Having a surveillance camera or a simple webcam for that matter at the Lighthouse would be a good idea, especially with a notice stating that the structure is under video surveillance. Secondly how about an after-school art program to constructively channel "creative" impulses.

Anonymous said...

was he dressed in a hoody baggy jeans ski mask and carrying a book bag?

Anonymous said...

If hw was indeed 17 he can be charged as an adult AND his name should be published for everyone to know. That way anyone who knows him might learn that there are some consequences for one's actions.

Anonymous said...

You people are a scream. Catching a Graffiti Vandal is not easy. I know, because I used to be one when I was young & dumb. Our PSD catches someone who has been defacing our beautiful island, and you fools wanna make stupid comments. I'm glad they caught the young & dumb idiot who's been marking up my hall & stairway in R.L.

Anonymous said...

I agree with the poster above. His name should be published for all to see. Since he was charged as an adult his name is public knowledge. I encourage anyone to find out his name and post it at various spots on the Island. There MUST be a consequence for ones action. To one of the other posters who wrote about some programs so that kids don't get bored. Gimme a break, now we should develop special programs so that an adult(17 years old) does not brake the law? What we need is for the PSD to continue doing a good job and arrest ANYONE who breaks the law!!!!

Anonymous said...

Yes, throwing people in jail is working so well in this country to deter future crime. Right.

Anonymous said...

Graffiti art is a recognized art form around the world with a pricey market where works by graffiti artists go for thousands of dollars. That is the story for the wonderful creative graffiti artists who have abandoned tagging trains etc for painting graffiti onto canvas, which can be purchased as paintings. Yet there is still plenty of graffiti art around -- still many moving post-911 murals around W. Queens, and RIP murals in the streets. These are the kinds of art works -- many times probably "commissioned" by businesses or sponsored by block associations - that have always made NYC a unique, people-oriented city. It is hoped that some youngsters who feel they need to express themselves through the medium of graffiti art, can be given the opportunity to channel that energy in a more socially acceptable way, hence the suggestion to provide an arts after-school program. The more enrichment we can provide kids, the better; especially ones that may show a flair or talent for the arts. And as far as the educational system is concerned, aren't 17 year olds still considered HS students - unless they've skipped a grade or two and graduated ahead of their age-mates. If 17 year olds are still in HS as they usually are until they graduate at 18, then, yes, for the purposes of education, you can still consider them "kids".

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
ROOSEVELT ISLANDER said...

I don't think it is right to include a suspect's name on this blog - particularly a juvenile and yes a 17 year old is a juvenile even if he can be charged as an adult in the criminal court system.

It's not possible to know what the outcome of this adjudication will be in a court of law. Suppose there is a plea or a conviction that allows the record to be expunged after a certain amount of time. By including the suspect's name in a blog comment, the information will live forever in a google search. That I think is unfair.

Perhaps I am wrong, but in these instances of an arrest on Roosevelt Island, I prefer to to try and maintain certain privacy rights - even for those accused of wrongdoing.

Also, the suspect's name adds nothing to the substance of the story - a graffiti arrest - and I am troubled that the suspect is being named by an anonymous commenter who heard it from someone else.

That's why I deleted the comment at 4:13 PM.

Anonymous said...

To one of the posters above, why don't we just empty all the jails, what a great idea since you don't think it is working as a deterrent. News flash.. not meant as a deterrent but to remove individuals from society who COMMIT a crime.

To one of the other posters, I am sorry to inform you that in our legal system, and that's what counts, a 17 year old is an adult.

Until tougher measures are taken, I hope you enjoy the graffiti that some of our "wonderful residents and contributors to our society place all over the Island.

Anonymous said...

Yes, but how do you explain that the USA is the one western country with the highest percentage of population in jail? How come crime determent works better in other countries who are slower in locking people up? Just food for thought. Nobody said jails should be emptied.

Anonymous said...

For all you people who have a problem with graffiti which is a form of art you"re all ignorant because he was expressing himself through art and if you don"t like that idea then you people can close down that garbage art gallery that only has two customers a day. atleast his art was available for everyone to see and enjoy, and you self vicious yuppies who feel offended by it can move OR JUST GET USED TO IT. ALRIGHT!!!
ISK8 ALL DAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

To the poster above with the IQ of a 10 year old. Sorry, it is against the law and and defaces public property. We will not get used to it. The piece of garbage ISK8 now has been in the system has a rap sheet and will have paid a substantial fine which I am sure he cannot afford.

How stupid can you be? In case you haven't noticed, the graffiti is erased over and over again. But keep living in your fantasy world as i am sure with your mentality, you make a significant contribution to society on a daily basis. By the way, thank your parents for doing a wonderful job in the way you were raised.

Anonymous said...

Public art/murals add to a community. Sites, such as the outer surface of the spiral, could be identified, and a competition open to all types of artists held to decide on a winning mural proposal. A simple possible idea: Trompe l'oeil sky-blue ribbon with photo-realistic giant seagulls ascending the spiral amid puffy little clouds. Art works are civic magnets and transform communities into destinations.

Anonymous said...

Don't always assume it's the parents who screwed up! Some kids just have a part of them that defies comprehension! As far as the person glorifying the defacing of property as art, perhaps you would like Graffiti on your bedroom wall so you can ponder its meaning before you fall off to sleep! Maybe you can locate the "artist" and make it so!

Anonymous said...

Actually everyone is wrong. At the age of 16, in new york state, if you commit a crime, you get locked up with the big boys in central bookings. You are officially charged as an adult when you are 16 years old. NOT CHARGED OR TRIED AS A JUVENILE. So lets leave public safety alone with the screaming of "let him go, he only 16, he aint 18, he juuussst a baby", while said baby/criminal commits a crime and gets arrested on the street. I have personally heard this before.

Anonymous said...

For mr.Ignorant crying about "it is against the law and defaces public property, and we wont get used to it" you are incorrect and narrow minded, graffti is art and will be recognised as art around the world and if your brain cant comprehend that idea maybe you should pick up a book and read about it sometime before you view it in disgust, as society has brained washed you to. And my parents raised an individual who speakes her mind and doesn't feed into the government's ethics and beliefs on how us as a society should behave or do things. Have a opened mind sometimes even if it might result in a unbias thought,(God forbid)

Anonymous said...

Very little graffiti is actual art. Most graffiti "artists" just do it for the kicks and not because they want to express themselves artistically. It's all about the rush from doing something illegal and daring, sometimes outright dangerous.

Anonymous said...

Let's remember that all art originally began as as a form of graffiti - paintings on cave walls, representing of hunts, wildlife, what have you. Today written graffiti also serves an important communal purpose in the Mid East and North Africa letting individuals express their profound feelings of rage about dictatorships. Throughout NYC graffiti art expresses community solidarity by means of memorial murals in "inner city" neighborhoods. These works are truly wonderful. Expensive publications are devoted to these beautiful murals by graffiti artists. Let's not forget the superstar graffiti artist the late Keith Haring. It's sad that a way cannot be found to welcome well-planned and carefully executed graffiti art murals and the like to Roosevelt Island. A mural here or there, perhaps one in honor of the RI Youth Program, another portraying members of RI sports teams, another in honor of RI-based fire-fighters lost in 911, would really raise community morale.

Anonymous said...

I am sorry but tagging the lighthouse is not art. Nobody had any artistic intention in mind when they did that. You can make whatever case for graffiti art you want but most of the things that go on on this island have nothing to do with art - not even in the broadest sense of this term. Not sure why the need for excursions into art history. Let's stick to what's going on here.

Anonymous said...

To the "10 year old girl" poster at 8:31pm. Let the VANDALS go mess up your apartment and paint your walls. Bottom line, it IS against the law and more importantly is an eye sore for the community. But no worries, it WILL be cleaned up soon enough. So the future tenants of Rikers Island can continue to waste their time because it will ALL be removed over and over again. In the process many youth will build rap sheets that will be used against them later in life. By the way, let me know where I can send you a coloring book and box of crayons to keep you occupied.

Gail Montague said...

Actually, with a defendant up to the age of 19, the judicial system MAY qualify the case as "youthful offender eligible". If so, during the prosecution of the case the only information released to the public would be the next court date and court part. The defendent's name is not released. Upon resolution of the case, if the charges are dismissed, the case is sealed to the public. If found guilty/pled guilty under YO status, the charges are adjudicated as youthful offender and the cased is also sealed. (There is no expunging of records in New York State. However, sealed cases are only accessible through a federal fingerprint check - by limited authorized agencies only - or by notarized permission from the defendant or unsealing order from a Supreme Court judge.)

Know what you are talking about before you start arguing or criticizing...

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Ben Tito Velazquez said...

your stupid you must be living in a fucking fish bowl. grafitti wrtiers today are sponsered by huge companys to travel the world to do their grafitti. grafitti is world wide. you still have that group that does it for kicks but you have guys who do great art. wake the hell up. jesus man with all this internet and your still saying they do it for kicks. sad so sad.

CheshireKitty said...

Ben is right. It's worldwide, much of it is commissioned, and it beautifies otherwise dull communities. It also puts a dynamic form of visual art, which often questions social/political paradigms, outside the framework of museums or the internet, into public space, where it can be considered/appreciated/provoke discussion/thought.

Westviewer said...

It's one thing if someone hires a graffiti artist to decorate a particular site s/he owns and quite another when the graffiti is put on public property or the property of someone who doesn't want it there. The first instance can be "art" since that is the the eye of the beholder; the second is vandalism.

Westviewer said...

If it's commissioned and in a place where someone paid to put it -- okay. Otherwise, it is vandalism.

CheshireKitty said...

Yes. That is true. The property owner could be contacted with an idea for a mural - I'm sure this happens all over the world. If the property owner agrees, then the wall is a legitimate space and the "vandalism" is now art.

CheshireKitty said...

The exciting neighborhoods today are overflowing with unauthorized street art. You see it all over Williamsburg, the Village and so forth. If it was all taken away, no-one would want to live in these vibrant areas. It's the wildness and anarchy that make these desirable areas to live in.

CheshireKitty said...

I once painted the floor of my employer's office blood red - glossy red - when he was away on business. He loved it! It improved the weathering wood plank floor! If you have an inspiration/idea - go for it!

CheshireKitty said...

What they could do it install various fluorescent filters for the lights on the structure - so, like the Empire State Building spire, the lighthouse could change color according to holidays and so forth.

CheshireKitty said...

Too bad graffiti mecca 5Pointz will be replaced by another rather sterile luxury high-rise... although a new, more interesting mid-rise project will also be built at the site. http://ny.curbed.com/tags/5-pointz. Property owner Wolkoff plans to invite street artists back to curate the 2,280-square-foot art space in his new development: How that will go we shall see.

CheshireKitty said...

I guess if it were up to you, even Lascaux wouldn't be allowed. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lascaux
Who knows? Maybe that was someone's "private" cave - so the drawings - according to you - represent vandalism. Luckily, no-one agrees with you and Lascaux and other prehistoric "vandalism" is now treasured as art.

CheshireKitty said...

Mostly dead artists get into the Met/Whitney/Guggenheim. The works housed in these museums are often priceless. These museums are similar to mausolea - monuments to great dead artists of the past.

In addition to their public projects, many street artists also have gallery shows and sell works on canvas/other media/etc. Public murals may drive interest in gallery shows/sales and thus serve as free ads - create interest in the gallery show. Murals executed by street artists represent the work of living artists freed from the confines of museums as well as art the public sees free of charge.


The artist takes into account, and is in turn influenced by the "problems" of each wall/setting - as well as the likelihood the work will be transformed/modified by additional posts etc. - this is the unique and exciting element of randomness and unpredictability in these street works that is lacking in a work executed solely by an artist.


Some works of street art may take up entire building facades - the element of size cannot be duplicated within a museum setting although of course artists have always executed large-scale sculptural/architectural works.


Still, the impact of huge murals taking up ten stories of a building - or bigger - remains one of the exciting aspects of street art. These works are carefully planned and often painted on a smaller scale beforehand then the artist will work from his notes or drawings to execute the work on a giant scale.

Westviewer said...

Don't you see that there is a difference between public murals and tagging?

YetAnotherRIer said...

Yes, dead artists end up in museums and living artists try to peddle their work in galleries.

CheshireKitty said...

Jeff Olson, who wrote anti-bank slogans in washable chalk outside a Bank of America branch, now faces 13 years in prison if convicted by the San Diego City Attorney. The "graffiti" in this case is protected by our right to free expression - a right enshrined in the First Amendment. Read about the case, and find the petition asking that charges against Olson be dropped here http://campaigns.dailykos.com/p/dia/action3/common/public/?action_KEY=455

CheshireKitty said...

Olson found not guilty!! First Amendment right upheld! http://www.10news.com/news/verdict-in-san-diego-chalk-vandalism-case-070113