"Our beloved OB Entryway Sign was tagged either last night or this morning," Gretchen Newsom informed Ocean Beach residents on Facebook Monday, August 10.
Newsom, president of the Ocean Beach Town Council, said the council is working with the city to have the sign cleaned up as soon as possible. An alternative to harsh cleaners is being researched so as not to ruin the sign.
Locals speculated on who might be responsible. Chuck B. posted on Facebook that it could be the same parties who tag all over Sunset Cliffs. Joy L. discovered her vehicle vandalized Monday morning and suggested it may be the same group. Amanda F. had her car broken into for the eighth time in four years on Sunday night and suggested that it may be related. Darlene B. saw the flower pot in front of Ranchos Cocina on Sunset Cliffs also tagged. Eric L. pointed a finger at Mission Beach taggers.
Tyler A. and Adam E. have seen the same tags all over Ocean Beach. Adam suggested they might be connected to the gang that congregates in the building behind Mother's Saloon on Bacon Street. He went on to describe them as a group of young Hispanics in their late teens and early twenties who dress alike and walk around Ocean Beach "trying to act tough and intimidate people."
Adam said he used to work for the trolley and had to report suspicious behavior of youths daily. He said the gang that was tagging Ocean Beach in the past was a Southeast San Diego Hispanic gang called “TNS,” which stands for "Trust No Souls." Elisa B. said the group “ASBK” is friends with “BWS” on MySpace. Another resident says they have seen "AESOK" tags all over town.
The strongest lead is from Vincent T. He reported that his friends saw some guys Saturday night playing pool at Cheswick's West on Newport Avenue. That same night, the men’s room was tagged with the same blue and green paint that was used to deface the O.B. sign.
The conversation took a detour from vandalism to designating a public art space in Ocean Beach. An O.B. artist, Hannah, suggested inviting the taggers to join the artist community.
To solve the case, police will rely in part on the GPS-based Graffiti Tracker program that began in 2011. Photographs of each incident are entered into the database allowing easier prosecutions and restitution.
Anyone who has information about the crime to contact Officer Zamora at [email protected]