Stricter Punishments for Graffiti and Vandalism

LIHU`E, KAUA`I (Ben Caxton) — Vandalism and graffiti have been on the rise in county parks since the COVID-19 crisis and Kaua‘i police are warning those who are committing these crimes that violators will face harsher punishments. Assistant Chief Bryson Ponce explains that during an emergency proclamation, many offenses have a higher grade of seriousness, including criminal property damage. What would have been a class c felony would now be a class b felony, which could mean more time spent in jail. Criminal property damage is potentially considered a petty misdemeanor, but would now elevate to a class b felony, which means up to 10 years in prison and fines of up to $25,000. Among the recent damages that KPD is looking into are graffiti at the campground comfort station at Lydgate Beach Park on March 18, and at the Waimea Swimming Pool on March 25, graffiti and damage to the women’s restroom door at Kalena Park on March 29. A barrier removed from its original location at Hanama`ulu Beach Park on March 29.

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