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Sheriffs arrest campus taggers

The campus parking structure has been a hot-spot for crime this semester

By Isaac Dektor, Editor-in-Chief

The third story of the parking garage at Los Angeles Valley College was tagged with vulgar graffiti a week ago. Two students from Grant High School were arrested and charged with misdemeanors for vandalizing public property. (Griffin O'Rourke | Valley Star)

The Valley College sheriff’s department recently arrested two Grant High School students on Monday for defacing the parking structure.

Vandals scrawled profanities and graphic images on the third floor of the northeast end of the parking structure. Valley’s sheriff’s department forwarded photos from the parking structure’s security cameras of the suspects to the Los Angeles School Police Department. On Monday morning, the juveniles who defaced the parking structure, two Grant High School students, were arrested for misdemeanors. Taggers hit the same Valley parking structure twice in the past two weeks.

“In the past two months, there have been hit-and-miss incidents,” said Deputy Butler, who originally suspected 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. Both high school students were charged with misdemeanors on Monday.

Two days after the parking structure was tagged, the LACCD alerted students about an incident near the parking structure at Valley College involving two young men exhibiting threatening behavior while in possession of a concealed firearm.

The victim, whose identity is being kept anonymous, initially reported that the incident occurred inside the parking structure. Campus deputies searched the structure within minutes of the report, but could not find anyone matching the description.

“Once we reviewed video camera footage, we came to find out that it actually occurred across the street, over on the other side of the sidewalk, on Ethel,” said Butler.

The crime now falls under the LAPD’s jurisdiction.

“A report that we wrote will go as a courtesy report to them to do the follow up investigation,” said Butler.

According to the sheriff’s department, the two high school students who were arrested for tagging the parking structure are not suspects in the investigation into the weapons law violation.

A “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 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.”

According to the sheriff’s department, a marked squad car will remain stationed outside of the parking structure. However, the patrol has been notably absent throughout the week.

---- With contributions from Asher Miles

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