Nassau County police are searching for a man who has tagged the Baldwin community with spray paint and Sharpie markers over the last year and a half. Last week, Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano announced a $5,000 reward for information that leads to the arrest of the subject, who always leaves the same symbol.
Recently, representatives of the county, the Town of Hempstead, Sanitary District No. 2, the Baldwin School District and its Board of Education, County Legislator Laura Curran (D-Baldwin) and various civic organizations met to discuss the issue. Business owners and residents with security cameras have been asked if they have captured any footage, and the NCPD has distributed a blurry image of the tagger.
According to Sani2 Commissioner LeRoy Roberts, the person responsible has hit every area of Baldwin and just about every surface his tag — always in black, but varying in size — could fit. Walls, poles, street signs, fences, mailboxes and vehicles have all been defaced, Roberts said.
“When graffiti is allowed to proliferate … it kind of sets the tone of the town, and it’s not a good tone,” Curran said. “It’s not the image that we want to project. That’s why it’s really important to get after it.”
About 18 months ago, Sani2 established its Graffiti Unit to cover up and remove graffiti. Once a week, Roberts and other members of Sani2 make the rounds in a pickup truck, equipped with a power washer and paint cans, to cover or remove the tags. One Tuesday this month, Roberts said, he and others removed about 25 tags around the neighborhood.
“He’s a brazen young man,” Brian O’Connor, chairman of Sani2’s Board of Commissioners, said of the subject. “He’s going to get caught.”
At a Baldwin Chamber of Commerce meeting on June 10, Mangano and Thomas Krumpter, the county Police Department’s acting commissioner, outlined some of their efforts to apprehend the miscreant. Krumpter said that a detective had been assigned to the case and was reviewing all the collected information on when and where the tags were posted.
If the vandal is arrested, Krumpter explained, the department should be able to connect him to a number of violations. “Once you get the subject for one,” he said, “that tag is like a fingerprint.”