Is Banksy being hunted by the NYPD? Police sources at odds over whether to arrest artist

Mayor Bloomberg believes graffiti is a 'sign of decay and loss of control'

Liam O'Brien
Friday 18 October 2013 16:56
Comments

Banksy has enthralled New Yorkers with his inventive and witty artworks, but sadly for the British-born artist the NYPD doesn't appear to be his biggest fan.

The New York Post claimed on its front page that the Vandal Squad is on the hunt for the prolific street artist.

Click here or on 'view gallery' to see more images

A source told the newspaper: "They want to question him in connection with the vandalism. If they catch him, he will be charged with vandalism."

However, it appeared that Banksy was taking the tabloid's story with a pinch of salt, writing on his website: "I don't read what I believe in the papers," alongside pictures of his latest artwork – a pair of Japanese ladies and a Bonsai Tree.

Individual police officers have been pictured on Instagram admiring Banksy's works and taking their own smartphone pictures.

New York Daily News also seemed sceptical. A source told the paper that the Vandal Squad only investigates "if someone complained about it," and that thus far there have been no complaints.

But there was a significant complaint from Mayor Bloomberg. When asked about Banksy's month-long residency in the city, he said: "I'll leave it up to our Department of Cultural Affairs.

"But look, graffiti does ruin people's property and it's a sign of decay and loss of control.

"Nobody's a bigger supporter of the arts than I am. I just think there are some places for art and there are some places [not for] art. And you running up to somebody's property or public property and defacing it is not my definition of art. Or it may be art, but it should not be permitted. And I think that's exactly what the law says."

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in