Graffiti Removal Worker Busted For Doing Over 100 Tags, Then Billing City For Him to Remove Them
A contract employee with the city of Burbank who worked as a graffiti remover has been busted for allegedly putting up over 100 tags around town himself, then turning around and billing the city for his work to remove them.53-year-old Enrique Medrano was arrested Thursday and was booked on suspicion of vandalism, burglary, and forgery, Burbank police Sgt. Darin Ryburn said, according to City News Service.
It was Medrano's job to clean up and remove graffiti from various places in Burbank, including in alleys, city parks, and other public areas. As a contractor with a graffiti-removal company, Medrano would bill Burbank for the jobs he did.
In total, Medrano turned in bills for over $2,200 for removing the graffiti he put up himself.
According to the Burbank Police, smart phone technology developed and implemented by the company with whom the city contracted was instrumental in helping solve this case. Medrano's criminal activities began in September, and soon after, his employers found discrepancies in his work orders. At the same time, investigators with the Burbank PD were alerted to unusual graffiti activity through their monitoring of the company's data technology.
Carla Lenhoff, President of Graffiti Protective Coatings, Inc., the company who hired Medrano, issued the following statement:
By partnering with the city of Burbank and Burbank Police Department, we were able to use our proprietary software to swiftly identify and ultimately catch this individual. His actions are not reflective ofthe principles of our organization or our high operational standards. We have zero tolerance for his behavior and as soon as we learned of the situation we took immediate action, terminated his employment, and have been fully cooperating with the authorities in their investigation. We will ensure that the city of Burbank and its residents will not have to pay any costs associated with his actions, and are proud to make our community a better place by eradicating graffiti.
Medrano posted bond, according to the Burbank Police Department, and returns to court in December.