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Graffiti Spree Hits Sleepy Mountain Town

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Published on Oct 17, 2012

A vandalism spree has hit Rutherford County. Three buildings in the historic downtown area were tagged late Sunday night, each marked with a similar design."We received a call on one [incident] and officers checking there discovered the others," said Rutherfordton Police Chief Kevin Lovelace.A boiler room door at the rear of the court house, the front wall of the county detention center and a the First Methodist Church across the street from the city buildings were all marked with similar black spray paint designs. It's unclear what the grafitti design is - some have suggested a flower, others a rooster, and another suggested cartoon dog Scooby Doo with his owner Shaggy. "We are still in the process of trying to figure the symbolism - if any - that there is," said Lovelace. "All three are similar, but not exact in nature."Lovelace said the tags appear to have been left by one person, and it's likely that same person hit all three building. "It's hard to tell with something like this if it's either kids out on a spree on Friday or Saturday night, or whether it's gang related and whether it means something," said Assistant District Attorney Alex Bass, who works in the court house. Bass first noticed the grafitti Sunday morning in front of the detention center during a weekly coffee and donut event.In surveillance tape you can see what appears to be one suspect walk - not run - briskly up to the jail, stand in front of the building spraying for about one minute, and then walk away. Officers said, because of the body language, it does not appear to be a kid messing around, but an adult."It appears to be a man standing there for approximately one minute, and then traveling north towards the church," said Lovelace.Follow Ashlea Surles on Twitter @AshleaSurles

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