Vandals hit South Main businesses with graffiti

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, December 2, 2009

By Shavonne Potts
Vandals targeted a group of South Main Street businesses this weekend, tagging them with blue spray paint.
Someone spray painted the words “Brown Pride” and “Latino Pride,” along with other symbols, on the back side of seven businesses, mostly in the 1900 block of South Main.
The Salisbury Police Department’s gang unit is investigating.
Salisbury Police Chief Mark Wilhelm said one of the business owners noticed the graffiti when he arrived at work. Once officers began investigating, they discovered that several other businesses had been vandalized.
Wilhelm said most of the graffiti indicates the person or group responsible may be affiliated with a Hispanic gang.
“A lot of it is Hispanic. I can’t say all of it is,” he said.
It is up to the business owner to remove the graffiti, but Wilhelm said he’s looked into helping the owners.
One possibility is through the United Way Day of Caring Sept. 11.
“I’ve been in contact with someone who may have a couple of groups available,” he said.
Mitch Swicegood is one of the business owners whose building was tagged.
Swicegood owns N-Tune Car Stereo at 1913 S. Main St.
“We weren’t aware of it until law enforcement came through,” he said.
Swicegood said he and his employees don’t venture to the back of the building on a daily basis.
“It’s the first time we ever had any problems like that,” he said.
He’s not sure how he’ll go about removing the graffiti.
“We haven’t had a chance to work with it,” Swicegood said.
Of the vandals, Swicegood called them cowardly.
“You can tell it’s somebody who is not bold enough to do it out front. They had to sneak and do it,” he said.
Other businesses vandalized were:
– Enterprise, 1823 S. Main St.
– CSI: NC, 1917 S. Main St.
– Baker Distributing Company, 1915 S. Main St.
– Air Master Technologies Inc., 1912 S. Main St.
– Raymond Moore, building owner, 1925 S. Main St.
– The Driveshaft Shop, 1531 S. Main St.