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Ray
2012-12-31, 17:34
I don't maintain a shelter. My pet peeve concerning shelters is the crap people leave there like gear nobody should have brought in the first place, pure garbage, food that becomes pure garbage and mouse food, and literature that always becomes pure garbage and mouse nests. Mice really seem to like Gideon Bibles for some reason. Holy mouse nests, Batman! Graffiti in shelters, I tend towards "eh, who cares".

But marking up signs ain't cool. Signing on the AT ain't taken lightly around here, they are carefully considered and placed. You would not believe all the BS required before putting a little sign on a post alongside the trail in Georgia; but that's really a good thing, right? There aren't many and the ones we have do say something important. Point being, don't screw with signs. OK?

This concerns someone who did and the ATC would like some help dealing with the SOB.



From: Becky Smucker <bsmucker@appalachiantrail.org>
To: ....edited by Ray, a whole buncha people who don't need their e-mail spammed....
Sent: Tue, December 18, 2012 9:31:28 AM
Subject: HELP NEEDED with A.T. Graffiti case

We need your help to spread a request to maintaining clubs to build a legal case against a thru-hiker who allegedly left graffiti along the Trail all through at least the southern region, probably more.

Earlier this year we had several maintainers come to us with pictures of graffiti left by a hiker on the Trail named "Soleman". He was autographing signs and shelters with a black permanent marker, and sometimes adding notations such as "NB 2012". We checked with Laurie Potteiger, and Soleman did sign in at Harpers Ferry, so we have a possible name and town. Since then we have collected about a dozen pictures of the graffiti on different signs and shelters, and a few supporting rumors.

The Appalachian Ranger District of the Pisgah National Forest has been in communication with the Appalachian Trail Park Office, and is now putting together a legal case. They need our help to collect more evidence at all points along the Trail.

Please ask your Region's club members to be on the lookout while on the Trail for Soleman graffiti, especially on signs and in shelters. WE NEED PICTURES with filenames that clearly identify the location, like this:

Soleman_Low Gap Shelter_C-ONF.jpg
or
Soleman_Jct Garenflo Gap_Madison Co NC.jpg

Also include in the body of the email info about who collected the data and when, and send it with picture attachments to me, and I'll pass it on to the Forest Service.

An ideal thing would be for us to find hikers who actually saw him signing, so if anyone has a way to get leads on this, let me know.

Eric Barron, Field Ranger in the Appalachian Trail Park Office said: "Graffiti has been a growing problem on the Trail, and we would get a lot of mileage if a case against Soleman and other graffiti artists were made."
--
Becky Smucker
Office Administrator
Appalachian Trail Conservancy

160-B Zillicoa St.

Asheville, NC 28801
Phone: 828.254.3708
Mobile: 828.231.2198
Skype: becky.smucker
Fax: 828.254.3754
bsmucker@appalachiantrail.org
www.appalachiantrail.org

saimyoji
2012-12-31, 17:40
"...and a few supporting rumors...

If'n they's rumors, they don't support shit.

Hope they can stop this. The graffiti around Bake Oven Knob pisses me off.....but not as much as the beer cans and cigarette butts.

Wonder
2012-12-31, 17:45
The problem with Bake Oven Knob is that it is so close to a parking lot! I used to go up there about once a month and started bringing a trash bag with me....... and that was at least 7 years ago. I can only imagine it now!

saimyoji
2012-12-31, 18:16
Students in my classes tell me stories of going up there and partying. I do what I can to get them to behave responsibly....but stoopid fucktard kids will do what they do....

I never understood why it was so important that everyone know that Becky visited BOK in 2010 and loves Bobby....

Wonder
2012-12-31, 18:53
What grade do you teach?

saimyoji
2012-12-31, 19:14
high school 10-12.

Cuffs
2012-12-31, 19:24
What about 'Cubby '08'. That fucker was everywhere too.

Ray
2012-12-31, 19:26
Becky visited BOK in 2010 and loves Bobby....What? Becky and Bobby?! I can't believe that.

JERMM
2012-12-31, 19:55
they're after one guy big deal...what about all the 100's or 1000's of others who added their graffiti to the walls of shelters...what's the difference in one name or hundreds...none.

Hog On Ice
2012-12-31, 19:55
What? Becky and Bobby?! I can't believe that.

wasn't Queen Becky doing the trail in '09 anyways or did she pick up and hike some more of it in '10

Wonder
2012-12-31, 20:09
high school 10-12.

Ahhh....I was just wondering. I used to have a friend who taught middle school in Allentown

john pickett
2013-01-01, 16:27
After moving back to Texas in 2004, I got into, then out of the habit of hiking and camping on the Cross-Timbers trail. In because it was convenient, out because of the number of high-school/college kids who came to party and leave behind a mess of beer cans and cigarettte butts.

MonkeyBoy
2013-01-01, 19:42
Saw a lot of signs this summer marked "Chopsticks"

Big Mac
2013-01-01, 20:11
Saw a lot of signs this summer marked "Chopsticks"

Stay out of the Chinese restaurants.

SGT Rock
2013-01-01, 20:14
While I hate graffiti...

Why pick this one guy out of the crowd? Did he write something more heinous than any of the other fucktards that do this?

I listen to an anthropologist talking about this topic back in the 90s where there were people writing on rock walls that there were ancient native American picture paintings on. The host was talking about how horrible it was that they were defacing this rock. The anthropologist pointed out that in 1000 years this graffiti would also be ancient rock paintings for archaeologists to study about us.

saimyoji
2013-01-01, 20:30
The anthropologist pointed out that in 1000 years this graffiti would also be ancient rock paintings for archaeologists to study about us.

C'mon Rock. You know thats horse shit. If you want to be remembered, write something intelligent and seal it up in a way we know will still be around in 1000 years. We are smart now, we can do shit like that. No need to count on rocks and delayed weathering to retain our cultural markings.

Even the ancient Egyptians figured out how to write on papyrus and squirrel it away....gimme a break.

Marking up trees and rocks like that only serves to show people's vanity and ignorance.

Simple truth is: today there are so many people writing so much useless mindless drivel that no one in 1000 years will be able to sort through it all and make any cultural conclusions about us other than we were a bunch of fucking retards.

Fucktards. May we live for 1000 years.

john pickett
2013-01-01, 20:49
"May we live for 1000 years"
We probably will, sigh.

rcli4
2013-01-01, 20:52
And you don't think there were folks saying,"Look at that crazy bastard carving in that stone, He needs a fucking haircut".

saimyoji
2013-01-01, 20:59
Nope. 1000 years ago I think they were too busy trying to survive. If folks had time to carve on rocks or make paint and draw then more power to them. Today we live in a different world. 1000 years in the future we will be studied more by the shit we have polluted the planet with way more than a few worthless words on rocks.

Give me a fucking break! Where does most graffiti come from? Gangs. And what do you think gang tags are going to tell anthropologists 1000 years from now that books, magazines, digital media won't retain?

Get a haircut? Maybe.

SGT Rock
2013-01-01, 21:01
I have seen where they have found graffiti in Egypt from workers working on various major projects. Turns out it is the same shit we do today, big penises, boobies, etc.

saimyoji
2013-01-01, 21:09
I have seen where they have found graffiti in Egypt from workers working on various major projects. Turns out it is the same shit we do today, big penises, boobies, etc.

I don't think that supports the idea that graffiti is culturally important.

Things that certain cultures carved and drew are def a part of how we get to know about them. Native American tribes, as I understand, didn't write down much of their folklore and we rely on carvings and artifacts to know about them.

But....I say again.....who gives a fuck if Becky loves Bobby? When where or how?

saimyoji
2013-01-01, 21:10
Why pick this one guy out of the crowd? Did he write something more heinous than any of the other fucktards that do this?

Nope. Merely an example of someone being able to be made an example of.

SGT Rock
2013-01-02, 04:47
Well I mentioned the ancient graffiti as just an interesting aside, interesting how it sparked you so much. Thread drift.

Anyhow, back to the original thought about why suddenly this guy? Good luck trying to prosecute that. All the guy has to do is say "it wasn't me" and not confess. There is no proof that it was him that wrote his name everywhere. His position could easily be that other hikers thought it was funny and started writing his name everywhere, like "Kilroy was here" was done during WWII. You may find someone willing to charge him, but I doubt any prosecutor is going to go to the mattresses to prosecute someone for vandalism with that skimpy evidence that it was actually him that did it. I imagine one of his defenses if he did go to court would also be selective prosecution since this is a fairly common thing to happen on the trail. That is unless he did something that was specifically heinous while doing all this graffiti.

Roots
2013-01-02, 07:06
Why are they singling out this one guy? There are hundreds of names on the walls of shelters. What's the big damn deal with this guy? I don't get it...

JAK
2013-01-02, 07:59
What? Becky and Bobby?! I can't believe that.
I know eh.

Lone Wolf
2013-01-02, 09:08
man-written shit on man-made shit don't bother me none. it ain't no biggie

john pickett
2013-01-02, 10:28
"Why pick this one guy out of the crowd? Did he write something more heinous than any of the other fucktards that do this?"
I have read of a man convicted of stealing a horse in England and sentenced to death. When he complained that the death sentence
was too great for the crime of horse-theft, the judge replied that he wasn't to be hanged for stealing a horse, but so that others in
the future wouldn't steal a horse.

john pickett
2013-01-02, 10:29
"Why pick this one guy out of the crowd? Did he write something more heinous than any of the other fucktards that do this?"
I have read of a man convicted of stealing a horse in England and sentenced to death. When he complained that the death sentence
was too great for the crime of horse-theft, the judge replied that he wasn't to be hanged for stealing a horse, but so that others in
the future wouldn't steal a horse.

sheepdog
2013-01-02, 10:46
"Why pick this one guy out of the crowd? Did he write something more heinous than any of the other fucktards that do this?"
I have read of a man convicted of stealing a horse in England and sentenced to death. When he complained that the death sentence
was too great for the crime of horse-theft, the judge replied that he wasn't to be hanged for stealing a horse, but so that others in
the future wouldn't steal a horse.

Did it work?

SGT Rock
2013-01-02, 20:10
No, people still stole horses.

And here is my point in all this...

Graffiti, vandalism at this level is a misdemeanor. Unless a law enforcement officer witnessed the crime personally, he will not cite that person. Good luck even deciding where to charge him and who to get to cite him. The AT is a big place and goes through a lot of juristictions.

If you as a citizen want to go before a judge and swear a warrant that you saw this guy doing it on ALL the signs you want to charge him with, then you can PLEASE knock yourself out. BUT, having a picture of a person from Harpers Ferry that used the same name is in no way proof that he is the one that did it. His "trail name" on all the signs is also not proof that he did it. In the end this guy will get off unless he decides to confess.

And lets say for arguments sake he can even prove that this was action was taken to single him out, he has good grounds for a law suit for false arrest. The false arrest will not be against the officer executing the warrant, it will be for the person that swore the warrant. It could result in a backfire and someone paying this guy money for doing this "crime". I've seen it happen. A guy I know at work got about $10K out of court from someone that swore a warrant on him for misdemeanor theft. I bet that shop keeper wishes he had just taking the $20 loss.

I've given you the reality of what you are really going after. If someone feels enough zeal to make this guy the example and possibly end up paying him about $10,000 after he beats it then sues you. Be my guest. Seems that making this guy the example is the main drive here and I wish you all the luck. But I think in about a year I'll bring this thread back and ask how well it worked out for the GATC.

Sometimes knowing when not to press the issue is the smart thing.

Lone Wolf
2013-01-02, 21:08
graffiti is a non-issue. much ado over nothing

Ray
2013-01-02, 21:20
.... Seems that making this guy the example is the main drive here and I wish you all the luck. But I think in about a year I'll bring this thread back and ask how well it worked out for the GATC.

Sometimes knowing when not to press the issue is the smart thing.Ain't GATC's doing. Just sayin'.

SGT Rock
2013-01-02, 21:25
My mistake. We will see how the ATC is doing with this.

saimyoji
2013-01-03, 00:44
Graffiti today, for the most part is just kids being destructive.

Is it culturally significant? I say no.

Is it a non-issue? In shelters on the trail or other such unimportant man made structures, maybe not. But I'm betting you'd shoot the punk ass bitch you caught tagging your car....

It is difficult or impossible to meaningfully make legal cases against said graffiti vandals? I can't say. Rock makes a good point. I'd hate for weasy to chime in and tell us how feces on rocks is graffiti and therefore.....blahblahblah....

Hog On Ice
2013-01-03, 07:37
on the other hand it might be to the ATC advantage to make a big stink about this guy and then not take it to court - it gets the idea out to other hikers that someone _could_ be legally hassled for graffiti without the risk of a false arrest lawsuit

Lugnut
2013-01-03, 09:42
I doubt if the ATC legally 'owns' any of the shelters, more than likely the Forest Service or some other federal agency has jurisdiction. Might just be a scare tactic like you say but it won't make any difference.

john pickett
2013-01-03, 11:41
"Did it work?"
Yes, but not for very long. People who steal exhibit a characteristic of stupid people; Short Memories.
And a second characteristic, uh,uh, I forget.

Razor
2013-01-03, 17:57
One step at a time and if we cant stop -or- maybe we can slow it down . This year we caught a idiot in Virginia that had marked 11 shelters in Georgia and most all up the trail with satanic symbols and messages. As he moved up he became bolder and bolder-AT the Partnershipshelter ,he was painting 1/2 of an outside wall and was caught. He was prosecuted and I am proud to have helped catch him. It is a defacement of our place and to stand and do nothing is not right.

saimyoji
2013-01-03, 18:27
Is the Partnership shelter on private land?

Hog On Ice
2013-01-03, 18:34
I would guess Partnership is on federal land

The Goat
2013-01-03, 19:25
I would guess Partnership is on federal land

i could have sworn it is private land.....but i might be thinking of 501

Hog On Ice
2013-01-03, 19:55
well the reason I am thinking federal land is that it is right next to the Mt. Rogers NRA Headquarters

JAK
2013-01-03, 19:55
I use invisible ink. Real bad ass stuff too.

Superman
2013-01-03, 19:57
I use invisible ink. Real bad ass stuff too.

Um....I can see what you're writing. It's not working.:angel:

Hog On Ice
2013-01-03, 19:58
are you sure Superman?

SGT Rock
2013-01-03, 21:03
One step at a time and if we cant stop -or- maybe we can slow it down . This year we caught a idiot in Virginia that had marked 11 shelters in Georgia and most all up the trail with satanic symbols and messages. As he moved up he became bolder and bolder-AT the Partnershipshelter ,he was painting 1/2 of an outside wall and was caught. He was prosecuted and I am proud to have helped catch him. It is a defacement of our place and to stand and do nothing is not right.

And getting caught is generally how you are going to catch these guys.

Razor
2013-01-06, 17:52
Yes --but if everyone helps protect our natural environment most of these punks will back off if any one person says something. It is only a matter of speaking up. They can retreat into an urban environment and work with a different group. Nature deserves better.

SGT Rock
2013-01-06, 18:59
I doubt this will stop people from marking on signs or shelters.

Big Mac
2013-01-06, 19:36
Pretty much guarantee it.