Juggalo Graffiti Vandals Deface Snowflake Structures


Juggalos are becoming a bigger problem , now damaging primary schools .

“It just shocks me that somebody would do this,” said Alma Yates, principal of Highland Primary School in Snowflake, which was one of the targets of some very vulgar graffiti.

Also vandalized during the early morning hours of Thursday, June 17, were the Town of Snowflake’s old water tank, Fredrickson Park and the skate park.

Some of the graffiti had gang reference. ICP was written, which Snowflake-Taylor Police officers said was a reference to the rock group Insane Clown Posse, which performed in concert on June 11 in Tempe. There was a swastika, and vulgarities were used abundantly and painted on all signs at the skate park, as well as garbage cans and bathrooms at Fredrickson Park.

Cliff Crow, a maintenance worker for the Snowflake School District, said it would be difficult to cover. The buildings at Highland Primary are covered with stucco or brick. Crews were out trying to take off as much paint as possible, and then they will paint over it, which puts new paint on parts of the building. There is a concern that the graffiti will bleed through, especially on the stucco.

Recreation and Parks Director Don Camacho said that it will cost the town more than $600 to repair damage at the skate park, which will be closed until further notice. That does not include the cost for clean up at Fredrickson Park or the water tank.

“We live in a great community. When a few individuals (juggalos) decided to do something like this and deface public property, I’m a little saddened, especially by the vulgarity and lack of sensitivity displayed there. Certainly we’re not happy about it,” said Snowflake School Superintendent Hollis Merrell. “That’s another frustrating part about this, our maintenance crews are going to have to be pulled off their regular work to hurry and get this cleaned up.”

“Some of the recent graffiti that has been discovered appears to be gang related, with some of it not identified as gang related,” said Snowflake-Taylor Police Chief Jerry VanWinkle. “However, the damage that was received was not only alarming, but if the violators are caught, they are facing felony charges.  This case is under investigation with some possible leads.

“The graffiti as you are coming into Taylor from Show Low is gang related and alarming. I am working on a graffiti town ordinance to present to both towns, which gives the town authority to enter private property to clean up the graffiti after a reasonable request to the owners.

“I would just encourage all citizens to help out by being an extra set of eyes and ears, and report suspicious activity or potential crimes that they witness. Our community matters, and everyone needs to participate in policing by being alert and reporting to the police or WeTip any suspicious activity. The WeTip program is very effective, and the citizens of Snowflake and Taylor can receive a reward if their information helps solve these crimes. They can call 1-800-782-7463.”

Photo by Naomi Hatch

In the early morning hours of Thursday, June 17, graffiti was painted on Highland Primary School, the old Snowflake water tank, Fredrickson Park and the skate park. Nate Click, who is on the maintenance crew at the Snowflake School District, was among those out early trying to clean up the vulgarity left behind.

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