PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Pittsburgh Police are investigating an act of graffiti vandalism that has targeted dozens of locations along the Great Allegheny Passage bike trails near Homestead.
A man who rides the trail on a daily basis complained to KDKA’s Marty Griffin and asked him to investigate.
The man says he and others have counted at least 45 so-called graffiti “tags” so far just between Sandcastle and the Hot Metal Bridge. He told Marty it’s upsetting.
“I come here every day. This is just like someone spray-painting my driveway,” he said.
The tags are a stylized image of an elephant and an image of an eye. Marty’s source took pictures of the tags and compared them to images he found by Googling on the Internet.
They bear an uncanny resemblance to art displayed at Studio AM in Homestead, which is co-owned by former Steeler Baron Batch, who is also the artist who created the elephant and eye images.
Police aren’t ready to say whether they think Batch is responsible for the graffiti or whether someone has copied his work for the tags. But when they get to the bottom of the case, they say that the person responsible could face a $350 fine for each tag.
Any fine that totals over $4,000 makes the vandalism a felony which could result in harsher penalties.
KDKA reached out to a publicist for Batch to get his reaction, and she said Batch would have no comment at this time.
Marty’s source says he just hopes the police catch the person who caused the damage.
“I think it’s really disrespectful,” he said.
If you’d like Marty to help you solve your problem, email him at GetMarty@kdka.com.