City Hands Graffiti-Busters Fat Checks

Don't pull out your spray paint can in front of these dudes. The Department of Public Works held out a big carrot today for San Franciscans to report graffiti vandal: The agency handed $250 checks at a Mission District press conference to two men whose quick action led to the arrest and conviction of vandals. 

The checks came from the Graffiti Rewards Fund — a program that showers beneficence upon anybody who files a police report that leads to the conviction of vandals. Assistant District Attorney Paul Henderson said that witness testimony is the “linchpin” in a graffiti case, and they need people willing to fill out police reports and testify in court as to what they saw.

The press conference had a bit of an Eagle Scout vibe —  the men's good deeds were read off and then they were handed a check instead of a patch. Ray Madarang, on the right, who lives on Hoff Street in the Mission said he was parking last fall when he saw vandals marring a building. Again. He called the police on his cell, and gave them a description of the vandal that led him to arrest the guy who was still hanging around a half hour later.

“I was doing it for my neighborhood,” Madarang said. “I was at my saturation point.”

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