Who is Responsible For All of Kalamazoo’s Graffiti?
I notice it from time to time, a little tag here and there around Kalamazoo, but don't typically understand what it means. And I don't pretend I do, because jumping to conclusions on a wild assumption only fuels rumors.
But nonetheless, graffiti around Kalamazoo remains a constant, and now police are trying to crack down on whoever is doing it. Because, unfortunately, when it happens to businesses and personal property, it's the owners who suffer most.
Sometimes, graffiti can be beautiful. When it's commissioned by business owners to cover a wall, or even some spontaneous pieces of art can really bring attention to a neighborhood, or dilapidated structure. But... that's not always the case.
For Kalamazoo, police have noticed an increase in graffiti appearing on buildings and other structures as the weather warms up.
"Most of it's been smaller graffiti on a pole, or a side of a building, we haven't seen as much as a big mural per say." - KDPS Officer Chris Brouwer told WWMT.
The big worry comes from the smaller stuff that makes direct threats. Profanity on poles saying "Kill Cops" and "shoot the Sheriff, and the Deputy."it unfortunately falls on the business owners and city workers to remove the graffiti from their structures.
Should graffiti be found on a business' exterior that is deemed inappropriate, the property owner shoulders the responsibility to clean it up, and remove it within 10 days.
"If that is an issue, where it doesn't get resolved in a certain amount of time, that would lead to a certain fine or citation."
This is where things go too far, because punishing the property owner for someone else's crime isn't acceptable, and cleaning graffiti isn't always easy.
So who is responsible for all the graffiti, and who should be responsible for cleaning it up?
Great questions. In regards to the "who is doing it," police are still scouring security footage from areas where it's happening to identify the subjects. But when it comes to "who is responsible," it shouldn't fall on the business owner.