Franklin police investigate rash of vandalism; cop car spray painted

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FRANKLIN, Ind. (Dec. 15, 2015) - Franklin police are searching for suspects in an unusual rash of vandalism that surfaced Saturday morning.

Franklin Police Detective Adam Joseph said the first sign of trouble came Saturday morning in the form of a vulgar, spray painted message left on the windows of a Franklin Police car that was parked at the officer’s residence.

“One of our officers was notified by a neighbor that his police car had been vandalized, spray painted on the driver’s side windows,” Joseph said.

Throughout the morning, property owners continued reporting spray painted graffiti on houses, garages, fences, dumpsters, railroad crossings and other structures around the north side of downtown Franklin. The situation resembles a vandalism rash that struck Franklin a couple years ago, but it’s not known if any of the symbols or messages are connected to any prior case. The Franklin Police Department has a special investigator who is working to analyze the writings for any connections to gangs or other groups.

“At this point we don’t know exactly who did this,” Joseph said. “Could be juveniles, could be adults. We really can’t say at this point. We’re working on several different leads to try to ascertain and develop some suspects.”

The best lead in the case is a can of spray paint found near a vacant house in the 600 block of Graham Street. Investigators will try to lift finger prints from the can. They’re also working with the local Walmart and other stores to possibly track when the can was purchased, and by whom.

“Obviously we want to find these people that have done this,” Joseph said. “There are several citizens throughout the city of Franklin that now have to deal with cleaning this up.”

Property owners are responsible for cleaning up graffiti left by vandals. Franklin Police officials were asking victims to save their receipts from any costs associated with clean up.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Franklin Police Tip Line. That number is (317) 346-1100.