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BRIEF: Suspected high school students tag Valley parking structure

Updated: Feb 9

The third story of the parking garage at Valley College was tagged with vulgar graffiti a week ago. The taggers are suspected to be from a nearby high school. (Griffin O'Rourke | Valley Star)

The LACCD alerted students Wednesday night about an incident in the parking structure at Valley College involving two young men exhibiting threatening behavior while in possession of a concealed firearm.

The "timely warning crime alert" was sent out after 9 p.m. to inform students of the "weapons law violation," which was reported at 12:17 p.m.

The email alert described the incident as "two male suspects brandishing a firearm, exhibiting gang-related gestures, and a pattern of conduct or a combination of conduct and statements reasonably intended to convey to the victim an implied threat of imminent harm."

The incident occurred shortly after taggers hit the same Valley parking structure twice in the past two weeks. The campus sheriff suspects local high school students are responsible for the graffiti.

On Monday, vandals scrawled profanities and graphic images on the third floor of the northeast end of the parking structure. Maintenance crews have recently finished painting over other graffiti that occurred before the spring semester started.

“In the past two months, there have been hit-and-miss incidents,” said Deputy Butler, who suspects students from Jack London Continuation High School. “They must have been watching me inside a vehicle and once I left, that’s when the graffiti happened. That’s my guess.”

Defacing property that is not one’s own is charged as vandalism in the California Penal code and is punished based on the value of the property. If the suspected students are identified they will be charged with a misdemeanor.

Valley’s sheriff's department has forwarded photos to the Los Angeles School Police Department, but the taggers have yet to be identified.

The campus crime blotter, an activity log that must be updated when an incident occurs, has not been kept up to date since August 2022.

— Asher Miles, Staff Writer

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