Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Cops keep tabs on graffiti taggers

A GRAFFITI database allowing police and the Maroondah Council to track, target and stop vandals could be set up next year.
The online database, developed in the Yarra Ranges, helps police to keep tabs on vandals and charge those caught with multiple recorded incidents.
It includes a map plotting incidents of graffiti that police keep “live” by updating with new or removed tags, including information from the public.
Yarra Ranges crime prevention officer Leading Sen-Constable Linda Hancock, who played a central role in setting up the database, said it was fast becoming a vital investigation tool. “We use it to map trends in tags, and where they are appearing and who they are appearing with,” she said.
Maroondah crime prevention officer Leading Sen-Constable Robert King said police were in talks with the council about the database, already being rolled out in Knox, Nillumbik and Cardinia. “If we find a tag in Knox, we can look up and see if the same tag has been done in Maroondah,” he said.
Maroondah operations and infrastructure director Trevor Welsh said the council was assessing the suitability and benefits of the database. He said the council now spent about $200,000 a year on removing graffiti.

Taken from: Maroondah Leader

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