[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Southampton 7-8-1986 by L.L. No. 12-1986. Amendments noted where applicable.]
This chapter shall be known as the "Graffiti and Defacing of Public or Private Property Law."
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- COMMUNITY SERVICE
- Any organization or program employed by the criminal courts or judiciary to provide for appropriate alternative sentences to fine or imprisonment.
- To mar the face or surface of, disfigure, injure or spoil the appearance of.
- An inscription, figure, mark or design which is written, scratched, painted or drawn on a wall, building, monument, statue, rock or any other surface.
The use of broad-tipped pens, aerosol spray paint cans or other marking devices used in connection with writing graffiti on the walls, public and private buildings, statues, monuments and other structures has become a problem in the Town of Southampton requiring punishment for the perpetrators. The defacing of such public property and the use of foul language in graffiti writing is harmful to the general public and is violative of the good and welfare of the People of the Town of Southampton. Therefore, Town Board intervention is necessary and advisable to regulate the distribution and sale of aerosol cans and similar products used in writing graffiti. Punishment by fine or imprisonment, insofar as our youthful offenders are concerned, has failed to stop this type of vandalism. It is the intent of the Town Board that any person guilty of writing graffiti on public or private buildings or structures should be punished so that the punishment shall fit the crime. The Town Board, accordingly, recommends to the judiciary, when an offender has been convicted of violating this chapter, that he be sentenced to remove graffiti under the supervision of those agencies designated by the judiciary to supervise offenders sentenced to community service.
No person shall write, paint or draw any word, inscription, design, figure or mark of any type without the consent and express permission of the owner or proprietor thereof or, in the case of public property, of the person having charge, custody or control thereof, or any graffiti upon:
Any property, public or private, building, church, synagogue, statue, monument, office, public passenger vehicle, bridge, dwelling or structure of any kind, including those in the course of erection; and
The doors, windows, steps, railing, fencing, balconies, balustrades, stairs, porches, halls, walls, sides of any enclosure thereof or any movable property.
No person shall disfigure, cut, cover or rub with or otherwise place filth or excrement of any kind on any property stated in Subsection A(1) or (2) above without the consent and express permission of the owner or proprietor thereof or, in the case of public property, of the person having charge, custody or control thereof.
[Amended 7-10-1990 by L.L. No. 19-1990]
Any person who violates this chapter shall be guilty of a Class A misdemeanor punishable by a fine of not more than $1,000 or imprisonment for not more than one year, or both. The court may, in its discretion, suspend the fine if offender agrees to and does in fact restore the property to the condition it was in prior to its destruction, damage or defacement or agrees to and does in fact provide restitution for the restoration of the property to the condition it was in prior to its destruction, damage or defacement, whichever the court determines is appropriate under the circumstances. In making this determination, the court shall also consider recommendations made by the victim.