Berks

Kutztown police: Graffiti is not art; it's vandalism

KUTZTOWN, Pa. - Kutztown police said they've seen an uptick in graffiti in the borough over the last week. They released a picture of the man they think is responsible.

While some would call it art, police Chief Craig Summer said this: "I don't call it art. I call it vandalism."

In deep green and black spray-paint, oddly formed faces and words now cover homes, garages and trash bins in Kutztown. Grainy surveillance video shows who police said they believe is responsible for the latest graffiti.

"We haven't had it in a while, and this seems like one individual doing it over like a short period of time," Summers said.

Summers said the vandal isn't just putting his work on abandoned buildings and garbage bins, he's also marking family homes.

"It's not cool for this community," said Alex Bartlett, who works in town.

Police said the graffiti doesn't just look bad, it can also bring down property value, and if the person who is responsible is ever caught, the penalties could be big.

"In the past, we've had people, it could be a felony, depending on how much damage they do," Summers said.

In most cases, work like this takes seconds, so police will need help keeping watch.

Bartlett said art is great, but not this kind.

"I hope he chills out and stops and finds a better way to get his creativity out. There's so much art around here, you can do it that way. It doesn't have to be on people's houses."

If you know anything about the vandalism in Kutztown, you can contact Crime Alert Berks County via anonymous text to 847411, starting the message with keyword alertberks, or by calling 877-373-9913. A cash reward is being offered for information that leads to an arrest.


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