Let?s clean it up
By CRAIG McTEAR
It's a seemingly never-ending scourge throughout Coffs Harbour, and costs our community a small fortune in repair bills.
Business owners are fed up with having to regularly clean up their vandalised walls, while residents and visitors are sick of being confronted with disgusting eyesores.
Police, retailers and Coffs Harbour City Council have begun to fight back against this crime, but your help is needed to ensure a lasting solution.
The first step in this orchestrated campaign will focus on the Park Beach area.
Police yesterday circulated the calling cards of their three most wanted offenders in the hope residents can identify the culprits.
If you know who has authored the 'tags' featured on page three today, you are urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000, or Coffs Harbour police on 6652 0299.
In return, Park Beach Plaza management isoffering $100 shopping vouchers to the first three people who supply information leading to the arrest of those responsible.
You are encouraged to supply your name to police, who will collate the information and arrange for you to be rewarded for your vigilance.
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But don't worry ? it doesn't necessarily mean you'll be required to give evidence if the case to go court.
"This initiative demonstrates community citizenship and that we can all work together to address local crime problems," Coffs/Clarence local area commander, Superintendent Peter Barrie, said.
"I am pleased that local business, council and the chamber of commerce are all keen to assist local police in addressing our joint concerns."
Coffs Harbour police are determined to stamp out graffiti vandalism, a serious crime which they officially class as malicious damage.
If you're caught offending, don't expect a mere slap on the wrist.
Depending on your age, you will either be cautioned, face youth conferencing, or be charged and appear before court.
If you're convicted, you are faced with the prospect of time behind bars.
"We are happy to work with local police and offer these rewards to assist in identifying the person or people responsible," Park Beach Plaza manager Lorenz Beckett said.
Vandalism in general is a major issue for all of us. So much so, the city council offers a $5000 reward for information leading to the conviction of anyone who attacks council property.