TAMPA — Three people were arrested Tuesday night after they spray painted over parts of the “Back the Blue” mural in downtown Tampa, police said.
Alexander Drummond and Seth Raigoza, both 18, and Emily A. Gabaree, 19, were arrested about 11 p.m. at the site of the mural in front of the Tampa Police headquarters on Franklin Street, records show. Each was charged with one count of criminal mischief after detectives reviewed surveillance video and identified them as the people who were spray painting the road, according to Tampa police.
Their arrest reports all include the same line: “The defendant knowingly, intentionally and willfully spraypainted graffiti in the roadway at 411 N Franklin St. causing approximately $200 in damage.”
A fourth suspect, a juvenile, was given a notice to appear on court and released to their parent on scene, police said.
A report by WTSP Ch. 10 showed “BLM” and “PIGS” were among some of the words painted on the mural.
Jail records show Gabaree lives in Land ‘O Lakes, Drummond in Zephyrhills and Raigoza in Wesley Chapel.
The pro-police mural has been a flashpoint for controversy since it was painted Aug. 1. Organizers had applied for, but not yet obtained, a permit for the mural.
Three days later, a person wearing all black was seen on camera getting out of a black vehicle and pouring an unknown substance on the mural. Police said it may have been tar. Shortly after midnight, another person spray-painted “F--- 12 and BLM,” on a roll-up utility door on the north side of Tampa police headquarters. Police said the person also poured red paint on the mural. “F--- 12″ is an anti-police slogan.
Back the Blue organizer Kristen Krutz told the Tampa Bay Times this week that the group was still waiting on a permit to repair the damage from that incident.
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