Kent Police arrest three for graffiti spree

An example of graffiti found in Kent that helped lead to the arrest of three people. - COURTESY PHOTO, Kent Police
An example of graffiti found in Kent that helped lead to the arrest of three people.
— image credit: COURTESY PHOTO, Kent Police

Kent Police arrested three Kent residents for investigation of third-degree malicious mischief in connection with graffiti tagging that has plagued Kent’s Valley and East Hill areas for months.

Ryan Faulkner, Jordan Holm and Kaylee Hance have collectively been charged with 77 counts of third-degree malicious mischief, according to a Thursday Kent Police media release.

On March 26, a Kent officer received information about possible taggers vandalizing a large area of Kent. Upon investigation, the officer identified that three individuals who use the monikers “YUK”, “4HED”, “MOLD”, “BZAR”, and “DMT.”

Police first started to see these tags appear on public and private property in 2012. On April 9, Kent Police were notified that Covington Police,  having an active investigation into the same graffiti tags, was serving a search warrant on an individual's home.

Kent’s graffiti removal program also obtained several photos of these monikers over time from local businesses who were victims of the vandalism. The suspects have created much financial hardship and frustration among private property owners.

“These arrests are a great example of residents, local businesses, and Kent and Covington Police working together to protect the quality of life in our community," said Kent Police Chief Ken Thomas. "Graffiti vandalism will not be tolerated in Kent and we will continue to make enforcement of property vandalism crimes and removal of graffiti a top priority."

Since 2008, the Kent Police Department has worked with other city agencies to develop an aggressive graffiti prevention program. It includes a graffiti hotline for reporting damage or providing tips on taggers, a community response team to help clean up graffiti, and enhanced penalties for persons caught “tagging.” The penalties can include a year in jail and a $5,000 fine.

Residents can report graffiti incidents by calling the city at 253-856-GRAF.

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