It is generally known that graffiti is a blight on any neighborhood in Las Vegas or elsewhere. If caught, those accused of graffiti may face criminal penalties, as well as possible civil action for the monetary damage caused to the property. Many self-professed graffiti artists have a variety of reasons for painting or drawing on property. These reasons may include political or social statements, wishing to mark their territory or simply the thrill of doing something risky. In other cases, the person who is painting without permission over someone else’s property may be unhappy with how it currently looks.
This appeared to be the case recently, when an unknown person painted over artwork on several local utility boxes. An artist had been commissioned last year to paint the boxes as part of the Zap 7 Project to make areas across Clark County more visually appealing. However, a local business owner had objected to the artwork on these particular boxes. As a result, some in the community suspected him of painting over the art with plain beige paint. However, there was no evidence against the man to lead to any charges being filed against him.
Authorities have pointed out that anyone found guilty of painting over the artwork could face misdemeanor charges for destructing private property. In a situation such as this, the property owners might also seek to recover any financial damages. For example, the artist may be re-commissioned to fix the damage to his artwork. In a more traditional graffiti case, a property owner might seek compensation for the cost to remove graffiti from fences or walls on residential or business property.
Source: Las Vegas Review-Journal, “Business owner denies involvement in painting over Zap Project artwork,” F. Andrew Taylor, June 16, 2016