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NEWS
By Jeremiah Dobruck and Lauren Williams | April 2, 2013
Swastikas and the word "skinhead" were found painted at Kaiser Elementary School's baseball field, officials said. Principal Deborah Granger said staffers first noticed the slurs when they got to school Monday. Swastikas were painted on trash cans, and the word "skinhead" with a swastika had been painted on part of the backstop, Granger said. The tops of benches had also been painted white. By Monday night, the graffiti had been blurred out so it wasn't visible to children or other passersby, and it was fully painted over Tuesday, Granger said.
NEWS
February 1, 2001
Jennifer Kho COSTA MESA -- It happened again Saturday. Ernie Feeney woke up, looked across the street and saw it -- 2-foot-high letters spray-painted on the fences at Paularino Elementary School. Her husband, John, said such graffiti has again become a common sight in his Mesa North neighborhood. "My real feeling is the city does an excellent job cleaning up graffiti but a lousy job preventing graffiti," he said. "I have no enthusiasm for calling just to get it painted over.
NEWS
By Bradley Zint | November 2, 2013
It's about 6:10 a.m. Thursday and 52 degrees in Costa Mesa. Gaetano Russo has already been on the clock for 2 1/2 hours. The skies are still black when his work truck approaches a side gate at the Santa Ana Country Club. He parks the Ford F-350 just off Newport Boulevard, the thoroughfare's two lanes empty at this time of the morning. Like a responding police car or fire truck, he turns on the emergency lights. They go flashing about the scene conspicuously. But Russo is here for a different kind of urgency: quickly ridding Costa Mesa of graffiti.
LOCAL
January 19, 2007
Workers at Newport Harbor High School discovered graffiti throughout the school's athletic facilities Tuesday and Thursday, and police said they recognized it as the work of a Costa Mesa gang. "They were monikers we haven't seen before," said school Principal Michael Vossen. He added that graffiti was not usually a problem there, but he wants to talk to the district about using graffiti-proof paint. Sgt. Evan Sailor of the Newport Beach Police Department said that spray paint across the girls' gym, the tennis courts, the stadium and some storage bins caused $1,600 in damage.
NEWS
By Mona Shadia | February 16, 2010
A sign on the side of the large empty building on Superior Avenue, near 17th Street and Newport Boulevard in Costa Mesa, says a Walgreens is coming soon. But more than a year after the building’s former occupant, Tower Records, left, no signs signal that the drug store is close to opening. And it appears that city officials are limited in what they can do to prevent the fenced-off property from being an eyesore and a constant target for graffiti taggers. Officials cannot force any business that’s been looking to set up shop up in town to finally open up. “We would love to see a quality development or improvement in that location,” said Assistant City Manager Tom Hatch.
NEWS
December 28, 2013
Someone spray painted the words "boats n hoes" on a sign welcoming drivers to Newport Beach near Sage Hill School, according to police. A passerby on Newport Coast Drive reported the graffiti to the Newport Beach police shortly after 9 a.m. Saturday, Lt. Evan Sailor said. The phrase likely references a song and music video featured in the Will Ferrell comedy "Step Brothers. " Sailor said an officer responded to take a report and police are investigating the graffiti as vandalism to city property.
NEWS
April 21, 2001
-- Deepa Bharath Vandals went on a tagging spree Tuesday and Wednesday nights, spray-painting gang symbols and slogans on the city's north side, officials said. They were two separate incidents, said Costa Mesa Police Lt. Dale Birney. One happened about midnight Tuesday, and the other at 11 p.m. Wednesday. The incidents were spread over Mission and Fillmore streets and the El Camino area, Birney said. "We've had ongoing incidents of graffiti," he said.
LOCAL
January 4, 2007
COSTA MESA   Anacapa Drive: Grand theft was reported in the 2500 block at 12:06 a.m. Tuesday.     West Baker Street: Graffiti vandalism was reported in the 1300 block at 12:32 p.m. Tuesday.     Bristol Street: Grand theft was reported in the 1000 block at 11:08 a.m. Tuesday.     College Avenue: Auto theft was reported in the 3100 block at 10:13 a.m. Tuesday.
NEWS
March 30, 2004
POLICE FILES COSTA MESA Adams Avenue: Grand theft was reported in the 1300 block at 7:39 a.m. Thursday. Bristol Street: Forgery was reported at South Coast Plaza at 9:21 p.m. Thursday. Hamilton Street: Graffiti and malicious behavior was reported in the 600 block at 2:50 a.m. Thursday. Harbor Boulevard: A robbery was reported in the 3000 block at 6:48 p.m. Thursday. Newport Boulevard: A commercial burglary was reported in the 2400 block at 8:16 a.m. Thursday.
ARTICLES BY DATE
NEWS
By Hannah Fry | March 9, 2014
Residents along Mission and Mendoza Drive in Costa Mesa gathered trash bags, brooms and dust pans and took to the streets Saturday morning to clean up their neighborhood. The community clean-up day is part of a larger improvement project that the city began in the neighborhoods next to Sonora Elementary School in December 2012, said Mike Brumbaugh, a code enforcement officer and member of the neighborhood improvement task force. The city is in the process of repaving several alleyways that run behind the multi-level housing units on Mission Drive and Mendoza Drive, and is asking homeowners to put money into upgrading their property.
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NEWS
December 28, 2013
Someone spray painted the words "boats n hoes" on a sign welcoming drivers to Newport Beach near Sage Hill School, according to police. A passerby on Newport Coast Drive reported the graffiti to the Newport Beach police shortly after 9 a.m. Saturday, Lt. Evan Sailor said. The phrase likely references a song and music video featured in the Will Ferrell comedy "Step Brothers. " Sailor said an officer responded to take a report and police are investigating the graffiti as vandalism to city property.
NEWS
November 8, 2013
Re. "Graffiti buster cleans up the town," (Nov. 3): Thank you for featuring the work that Gaetano Russo does for our city. Not only is the story of the expertise he uses to eliminate graffiti enlightening, but it also shows the loyalty he feels toward Costa Mesa. Thank you, Mr. Russo. Please make stories of our city workers an ongoing column so we can better understand their importance. Too often we have been inundated with negative attitudes from the City Council, who see these employees as a hindrance.
NEWS
By Bradley Zint | November 2, 2013
It's about 6:10 a.m. Thursday and 52 degrees in Costa Mesa. Gaetano Russo has already been on the clock for 2 1/2 hours. The skies are still black when his work truck approaches a side gate at the Santa Ana Country Club. He parks the Ford F-350 just off Newport Boulevard, the thoroughfare's two lanes empty at this time of the morning. Like a responding police car or fire truck, he turns on the emergency lights. They go flashing about the scene conspicuously. But Russo is here for a different kind of urgency: quickly ridding Costa Mesa of graffiti.
NEWS
By Jeremiah Dobruck and Lauren Williams | April 2, 2013
Swastikas and the word "skinhead" were found painted at Kaiser Elementary School's baseball field, officials said. Principal Deborah Granger said staffers first noticed the slurs when they got to school Monday. Swastikas were painted on trash cans, and the word "skinhead" with a swastika had been painted on part of the backstop, Granger said. The tops of benches had also been painted white. By Monday night, the graffiti had been blurred out so it wasn't visible to children or other passersby, and it was fully painted over Tuesday, Granger said.
NEWS
By Joseph Serna, joseph.serna@latimes.com | March 19, 2011
COSTA MESA — Costa Mesa budgeted $201,000 for graffiti abatement this fiscal year ending in June. Between January and December of last year, city crews had to clean up more than 52,000 square feet of vandalism. The numbers don't lie, police say. If you don't keep vandalism in check, it takes a toll on the city's appearance and finances. So starting this year, Costa Mesa police have teamed up with the chamber of commerce to stop vandalism before it starts. In a beefed up graffiti ordinance passed by the City Council in October that went into effect in January, businesses have to limit access to popular tools of the graffiti trade: spray paint, marking pens and etching tools, among others.
NEWS
By Tom Ragan, tom.ragan@latimes.com | November 15, 2010
Newport-Mesa Unified School District maintenance workers were painting over graffiti — some of it reported to be racist in nature — at a pair of schools Monday morning. Newport Harbor High School and Mariners Elementary School were "tagged" with graffiti over the weekend, according to Newport-Mesa Unified spokeswoman Laura Boss. She said the vandalism was reported to Newport Beach police and that officers came out, took pictures and are in the process of investigating.
NEWS
By Mona Shadia, mona.shadia@latimes.com | October 6, 2010
COSTA MESA — After months of city staff and department collaborations, research and debate, the City Council on Tuesday approved a new graffiti ordinance, one that is designed to tighten the belt on taggers and vandals. The ordinance was adopted after a 3-to-1 vote, with Mayor Allan Mansoor voting against it. Councilman Eric Bever was absent. Much of the vandalism in Costa Mesa is committed by taggers, who are usually minors, Officer Jason Chamness said. The graffiti ordinance holds parents or guardians responsible for their children's acts, and requires them to pay the costs of the damages to the city.
NEWS
By Joanna Clay, joanna.clay@latimes.com | September 9, 2010
COSTA MESA — It wasn't until the artist Bigfoot described the mural he's making for Hurley's )( Space Gallery that his pieces revealed new meaning. "There are seven main guys, and they're all emerging from behind trees and stuff," he said. "The tallest character is blocking the road where a truck and a bulldozer are trying to get in. " Is he making an environmental statement? "Maybe," Bigfoot said, laughing it off. The mural, which he was working on during the interview, will debut at the )
NEWS
By Mona Shadia | March 17, 2010
Combating graffiti is never an easy task: It takes collaboration among law enforcement officials, city management, graffiti removal staff and council members, according to a discussion at Tuesday’s City Council meeting. The difficulties of containing the issue came to a head when an ordinance designed to make it more difficult for taggers to deface the city came before the Costa Mesa City Council for approval. After two hours of back-and-forth debate, the council voted to continue the item until April 20. The new ordinance would tighten restrictions on businesses by prohibiting them from selling pressurized cans containing paint or dye, marking pens, adhesive stickers or etchers, among other tagging tools, to anyone younger than 18. It would also require businesses to keep products like drills or spray paint behind locked glass or in sight of an employee during business hours.
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