New Age Restriction on Spray Paint in Hobbs

By Camaron Abundes  
NewsWest 9

HOBBS- Inking out a big graffiti problem may be a little easier for Hobbs Police starting in January. A city ordinance will require consumers to show identification to purchase spray paint, wide tipped markers, and glue aerosols.

"We've had complaints of graffiti, North, South, East and West. It hasn't been in one particular area, it's been everywhere," Lieutenant Chuck Frizell with the Hobbs Police Department, said.

Lt. Frizell says they've seen a surge of graffiti this summer, popping up on fences, homes, and even on a few police cars.

"We think this ordinance will give us a little bit of leverage, a little bit of strength," he said, "to get these kids to behave."

Only adults 18 or older or kids with written parental consent can purchase the products under the new ordinance. Those who are caught can face up to 90 days in jail and up to a $500 dollar fine.

Police aren't going at it alone, they've enlisted the help of the Hobbs Municipal School District who started a program to offer rewards for information leading to the arrest of a tagger.

"Schools are buying in on it as a community problem and they're allowing us some insight by allowing us to work inside their schools to find the offenders," Lt. Frizell said,  "We rely on the word on the street and word from the kids to lead us the right way to find may be doing it."

If you would like to report graffiti, contact Lea County Crime Stoppers at (575) 393-8005.