Vandalism strikes Shoals businesses

Vandalism strikes Shoals businesses

An array of colorful images is quickly becoming unwanted wallpaper for many buildings in the Shoals.

"I want them to stop, it's ugly, it's disrespectful and it's hurting our businesses downtown," said Chris Webb.

Chris Webb owns Shaolin Computers in the downtown business district of Florence. He says he's familiar with the graffiti on his property.

"The back of our building gets spray painted fairly regularly; we've covered it up, and very quickly afterward it gets painted again," said Webb.

"It's frustrating because when it happened," said Chicago Cafe owner, Keith Goins. "It happened right before an event downtown, with things happening the next day, it's essential to get it clean."

Police say they are searching for the person who is responsible.

"We're using some creative means to try and catch this person. The city had gone and painted over some of these areas and we try to go back and catch them," said Mike Holt of the Florence Police.

"We have increased patrols throughout different areas of the city and different things to try to curtail the activity," Muscle Shoals Police Chief, Robert Evans.

Authorities call the graffiti 'tagging' a term coined to describe a group marking a specific place.

"They'll go around to different parts of the town and spray paint some type of identifying mark on a building just to say they've been there," said Chief Evans.

In the mean time businesses are taking extra precautions to protect their property.

"We're going to be putting cameras in front of both my stores," said Webb.

"We can at least deter them with the knowledge that they can be photographed," Goins said.