City tries to help residents with dangerous graffiti clean-up

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INDIANAPOLIS – As some Indianapolis residents tackle the dangerous task of cleaning up graffiti, City agencies are trying offer help.

This week, a man was held up at gun point while trying to paint over graffiti on the side of an old bar. He was painting, because a City ordinance requires property owners to clean up graffiti or pay a fine.

“We don’t want someone to feel their putting themselves at risk, but that does highlight how dangerous graffiti is,” said Councilman Jeff Miller, District 19. Miller said cleaning up tagging around town will help prevent crime.

He said that’s why the Department of Public Safety and the Department of Public Works is teaming up to create a mobile clean-up until that will help residents who feel unsafe battling the graffiti alone. Officials hope to have it up and running by June.

Resident Kyle Stewart said his neighbors keep an eye out for him when he starts painting over graffiti on abandoned homes in his neighborhood.

“Brings the value of our houses back up,” he said while holding a paintbrush.

Stewart just picked up free paint from the Lowe’s on East 25th street during a Keep Indianapolis Beautiful event.

“We’re taking the streets back,” said Stewart as he painted over a gang sign which he admits could be back up by the next day. But he vowed, he’d be back to clean it up.

“I’ll be back repainting it again.”