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Report Graffiti

Here

   Useful Information about Graffiti

The police do have a role in fighting graffiti and arrests play a part in reducing vandalism. Our police do set aside time and staffing to put trouble spots under surveillance and report locations of graffiti to town resources for rapid removal and abatement but it takes effective partnerships with our community to effectively prevent this type of criminal activity. How can you help?

  1. Watch for suspicious persons in areas where graffiti is a problem. Report the persons to police. Provide accurate descriptions of persons and vehicles.
  2. Report graffiti when you find it. Give the police an indication of when the damage happened. Between what times? This helps to establish a pattern.
  3. Video surveillance is a good technique to catch vandals.
  4. Plant ivy that will obscure targeted walls over time. When the vandal has no surface he can't paint.
  5. Put sprinklers on a motion sensor. When the vandal gets close to a wall, the vandal gets wet.
  6. Increase lighting and visibility around graffiti areas. This can include cutting back shrubbery and pruning trees so that areas obscured by greenery can be seen from well-traveled areas.
  7. Establish a neighborhood watch group. Be serious about it. Make sure the neighbors know where the graffiti problem areas are so that if they see loitering persons they will know to call the police.

Parents should take an interest in the activities of their children. Watch for graffiti on personal items. Look for paint cans, large magic markers, "My Name Is" stickers, or tools you don't recognize (that might be used for etching.) Look for their "piece book" and ask them if any of their drawings are on the city walls. Look at the graffiti in your neighborhood and ask your children about it. Discuss how the appearance of graffiti trashes the neighborhood in which you live. Get professional help for your child if you discover involvement in the graffiti culture. When your kid is caught you will pay for the damage he or she has inflicted on the community.

Useful links for Graffiti Abatement
Tools and Techniques:

  • WHAT CAN BE DONE ABOUT GRAFFITTI?

    • Report it to:

      • Police / Sheriff Non-emergency 575-758-2216 (weekends or Holidays)

      • OR - If you witness it occurring, 9-1-1

        • Online - www.taosgov.com- 'Select Report a graffiti problem' within Town limits only.

      • Take Photos and send to Graffiti Abatement: Town of Taos Planning Department

        • Digital photos (no larger than 1MB, please)
    • Remove it:

      • From your own property, paint it out, or check out a removal kit with solvent from one of 9 fire stations (kits contain solvent to be used to 'wipe-off' graffiti).

  • Chronic locations - for your own property, utilize the links above for 'target-hardening' techniques, i.e., tips to make your property more secure and less vulnerable to graffiti and other vandalism.

    • Note: All online reports are automatically sent to Graffiti Abatement for referral to responsible agency for removal. Public property is cleaned by a number of agencies, usually those with ownership responsibility (i.e. NM DOT, Town of Taos, Utility Companies)

    • By reporting and accurately documenting the "tags", community members help the police and district attorneys build strong cases that will result in prosecution. Repeat offenders are often sentenced to jail time, and are also ordered to pay restitution to the victims. It is also helpful to have community members or businesses willing to testify or come to court for trial or sentencing of a convicted graffiti vandal. Your help is important!

*Useful Phone Numbers
Taos Police Department: 575-758-2216
Taos Graffiti Abatement (Planning Dept.): 575-751-2016
Taos Facilities Department: 575-758-5792