It took less than 72 hours for vandals to tag the brand new “Family” mural in Desert Hot Springs.
The mural, which features Orca whales swimming through the sea, was completed on Sunday. Sometime Tuesday night someone tagged the wall with gold spray paint.
“Why do people have to destroy beautiful artwork like this? It just doesn’t make any sense,” says Desert Hot Spring resident Warren Salender.
Wednesday morning, crews and one of the artists who painted the piece were hard at work removing the spray paint and working to bring it back to normal.
“I know that the city is really quick on getting the graffiti handled so I wanted to see if they were taking care of it and as soon as I come by they are already fixing it,” says Desert Hot Springs resident Michael Burk.
“When artists paint murals your soul’s kind of out there on a wall and these are the risks that exist unfortunately,” says co-artist of the “Family” mural John R. Coleman. “It obviously breaks my heart but we are coming together as a community and we’ll make this right. so I hope they leave it alone in the future,” says Coleman.
Some members of the community want to take additional steps to protect their newly painted whales.
“We just want to put in cameras to hopefully detour people but put in good enough quality cameras to where it’d be able to eventually help police catch someone that would do something like this,” says David Fellman with Absolute Electronics. He has offered to install a camera system at no charge if the city pays for the cameras and equipment.
“We would put in all the equipment at no charge for our labor and then the UPS store has offered to let the DVR unit to be housed in his store,” says Fellman.
“I have had many of my murals tagged before,” says Coleman. “This is just something that you hope doesn’t happen but you hope for the best we have a lot of public support to fix this and we’ll get it taken care of because it’s not going to deter me. I’m going to keep painting murals in Desert Hot Springs and do the best I can to help beautify this town,” says Coleman.
The mural is located on the corner of Palm Dr. and 2 Bunch Palm Trail.
Anyone with any information about the vandalism is asked to contact the Desert Hot Springs Police Department.