[HISTORY: Adopted by the Suffolk County Legislature 6-10-1986 by L.L. No. 25-1986 (Ch. 392 of the 1985 Code). Amendments noted where applicable. Uncodified sections of local laws amending these provisions are included at the end of this chapter.]
This Legislature hereby finds that the spread of graffiti on public and private buildings within the County of Suffolk diminishes the quality of life within the County of Suffolk by destroying the aesthetic qualities sought by the preponderance of residents of this County. This Legislature further finds that current laws are inadequate to deter the defacement of public and private property through the use of aerosol spray paint cans and other marking devices. This Legislature also finds that such defacement of property is most frequently committed by individuals under the age of 18 years using aerosol spray paint cans, that such aerosol cans are often stolen from retail stores by such individuals, that such persons rarely have a legitimate need for such aerosol cans and that, where such a need exists, such cans may be furnished by a parent or guardian.
Therefore, the purpose of this chapter is to prohibit the sale of such aerosol cans to individuals under the age of 18 within the County of Suffolk and to require that persons engaged in the retail sale of such aerosol cans and markers take reasonable steps to prevent the theft of such cans.
No person within the County of Suffolk shall write, paint or draw any inscription, figure or mark of any type on any public or private building or other structure or any other real or personal property owned, operated or maintained by a public benefit corporation, the County of Suffolk or any agency or instrumentality thereof or by any person, firm or corporation unless the express permission of the owner or operator of the property has been obtained.
No person within the County of Suffolk shall carry an aerosol spray paint can into any public building or other public facility with the intent to violate the provisions of Subsection A of this section.
No person within the County of Suffolk shall sell or offer to sell an aerosol spray paint can to any person under 18 years of age.
No person under 18 years of age shall purchase an aerosol spray paint can.
All persons within the County of Suffolk who sell or offer for sale aerosol spray paint cans shall post conspicuous signs, containing all capital lettering not less than two inches in height on a contrasting background, summarizing the prohibitions contained in § 502-2 of this chapter and further stating "UNDER PENALTY OF LAW AND CRIMINAL PROSECUTION."
[Added 12-7-2010 by L.L. No. 7-2011]
All persons who sell or offer for sale aerosol spray paint cans shall display these items in line of sight of a normally occupied work station, either directly or by surveillance equipment, during the regular course of business; within a locked case; behind a service counter or otherwise stored in a manner which restricts general public access to the aerosol spray paint cans without employee assistance.
[Amended 9-14-1993 by L.L. No. 22-1993; 6-29-1999 by L.L. No. 19-1999]
Any person who violates § 502-2 of this chapter shall be guilty of an unclassified misdemeanor punishable by a fine of not more than $5,000 or imprisonment for not more than one year, or both. Furthermore, it is the recommendation of this Legislature that, where appropriate, the court imposing punishment require those who commit such acts of defacement to also restore the property so damaged and to provide community service consisting of work assignments to clean up designated graffiti within the County of Suffolk as determined by the court.
Any individual, other than a police officer, peace officer or any other law enforcement officer or official, who provides information to appropriate law enforcement authorities which shall lead to the detection, arrest and conviction of a person or persons guilty of violating this chapter shall receive a payment of 10% of the actual fine collected from such convicted individual pursuant to the provisions of this chapter, said payment to be made after receipt of such fine by the County.