Clean-up in progress after Broadway Jimi statue tagged — UPDATE

photo (19)UPDATE: Seattle Police have arrested two men for going on a drunken graffiti spree that claimed a Capitol Hill icon as a target Wednesday night. The Jimi Hendrix statue at Broadway and Pine suffered the indignity of a sloppy, blue-paint tag on the 43rd anniversary of his death. According to SPD the two men, 21 and 22, were caught blue-handed downtown carrying cans of spray paint. Here’s SPD’s report:

Just before 8:00 pm last night, officers from the East Precinct responded to reports of two intoxicated males spray painting the statue and nearby construction equipment in the 1600 Block of Broadway.   According to witnesses, the two suspects entered a store and purchased spray paint, then left the store to deface the statue.  The two then tagged the construction equipment, as well as a building, city utility box and signs.  The two then boarded a Metro bus and headed downtown.  Officers learned later that the suspects spray painted the bus they were on as they got off in the area of 8th Avenue and Olive Way.  The driver was able to photograph the suspects doing damage to the bus and called it in.  During that time, they continued to paint multiple buildings as they walked toward downtown.

At least one witness reported two, possibly intoxicated people were responsible for the graffiti. There are also multiple security cameras in the area across the street from Seattle Central.

Representatives with Hunters Capital, the developers behind the adjacent Broadway Building and owners of the statue, said a clean-up crew had been dispatched Thursday morning.

The statue honoring the Seattle music legend, a remnant of Hunters Capital head Michael Malone’s music distribution business that once operated at the site, was once considered for a move from its longtime Broadway home to the new Jimi Hendrix Park being developed in the Central District.

The incident is another recent example of poor canvas selection by area taggers. While some urban features seem to clearly call out for decoration, others have no need for additional self-expression.

UPDATE: Both of the arrested have limited criminal records including arrests as juveniles. One of the men will turn 21 later this month, the other’s age was not yet available via court records.

Thanks to CHS reader Charles for sending in the sad photographic evidence.

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25 thoughts on “Clean-up in progress after Broadway Jimi statue tagged — UPDATE

    • I walked by as they were running away – there were two of them, in their late twenties / early thirties, reeked of pot, and the one frantically wrapping the statue in embroidery thread seemed a bit disoriented. I saw more more spray paint on some construction signage as I walked further up broadway.

    • I saw them too! There were a ton of people around. These morons were in the middle of the street, sticking their middle fingers in people’s windshield as they got honked at. I was happy to see this blog post.

  1. Taggers suck. No, really. For some reason it seems worse on Capitol Hill now than ever before. Considering the disrespect most taggers have for most things around here, I imagined the Hendrix statue would get it eventually. I’m a little surprised that CHB seems to endorse “self expression” on the new art poles associated with the new streetcar. As far as I’m concerned, it’s just vandalism.

  2. Must you call the cops about every damn thing? You want someone to get in the system over something non- violent? If you’re not going to confront them your self just let it go. You turned an obnoxious prank into a criminal record?

    • With the recent spate of mental health attacks, stabbings and deaths, you are advocaitng taking matters into our own hands? Awesome. Also, every choice has a consequence, I choose to live in a lawful society. Throw the book at them, violent crime or not.

    • Yes, I called the cops on them. They were aggressive and belligerent and no way am I gonna confront two drunk guys myself. You never know if it’s going to get violent. I also later identified them to the police. I’m so uncool.

    • See. It’s not just an obnoxious prank- it has a real cost in real dollars to the people that have to clean it up and it ruins the look of the neighborhood. You do realize that it’s the mom and pops all over the hill and building owners that have to pay for the materials or labor to get rid of the stupid tagging all over their buildings or else they face fines from the city, right? So not only are taggers(the last two I’ve seen are grown adults- grow the f up, would you?) making the neighborhood look like crap, they’re also costing the people that live here real money– and if your apartment owner has increased costs because of vandalism (which he or she MUST pay or else face even BIGGER fines and penalties from the city. The city who does not care that your building was vandalized, they only care that the crap is on your wall and will fine you anyway). If the apartment owner has increased costs, then those increased costs are (guess what!) factored into the rent making it even more expensive to live in the neighborhood. Some of our friends and neighbors are barely scraping by, the last thing they need is a hike in the rent because a bunch of 20-30-something wanna-be-thugs that can’t control themselves with a crayon.

      • Seriously, Mitchee? You have some real world waking up to do. This isn’t a prank, it’s defacing public property. How about I spray paint your face? Would you think that just a prank? If it were up to me, these dumb f*#ks would be forced to clean off all tagging in Seattle while getting an electrical shock for every building they clean. Maybe then they’d get an understanding of the annoyances they caused for others and the frustration of those who now have to shell out the money to clean up their pitiful “art work.” So sad they feel so insecure about themselves they have to resort to actions like this to get attention.

  3. It’s actually pretty messed up to run around at night and throw paint all over everything. It’s incredibly childish and selfish, that’s for sure, and the community I live in doesn’t want or need it. Oh…before you yell “yuppie scum!” I am not. I’m an aging punk who lives in low-income housing, and tagging my building does…what in the hell does that do again, and what kind of attention are you seeking? Just because it doesn’t bother everyone doesn’t mean it doesn’t bother me. Graffiti and Seattle has never been a good mix, so getting that through loud and clear is in everyone’s best interests.

  4. The penalty is not severe so it is worth the risk for these vandals. Harsh penalties are a deterrent. For instance bludgeoning a vandal with a baseball bat doesn’t happen because there are harsh penalties and medical costs involved with lifelong debilitating injuries. Not to mention how guilty you would feel as a member of a civilized society. What we need is to increase the penalty for this form of vandalism. Graffiti vandals hurt more than property owners and businesses. They hurt everyone exposed their destruction.

    • I would like to permanently brand them with a Scarlet “V”. Hate these bastards and this was a particularly egregious instance of vandalism, as they went after Jimi. WTF?!

  5. I have spent thousands of dollars and hundreds of hours cleaning up graffiti over the last few years. I am pretty damn tired of it.

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