Spray-paint vandal in £3k rampage
A 22-year-old vandal caused more than £3,000 of damage in just two days by spray-painting graffiti across the city centre.
Joseph Dyke, of Bloomfield Road, appeared at Bath Magistrates' Court this week to admit 14 charges of criminal damage, which all took place on June 13 and 14 this year.
He was caught red-handed after staff at the Green Park Tavern, in Lower Bristol Road, spotted graffiti in the men's toilets and then noticed Dyke had black paint on his fingers.
After his arrest, police were able to match his design in the pub to a number of other drawings on buildings throughout the centre of Bath.
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The court heard that Dyke had been convicted of 49 similar offences during a graffiti spree in the city in 2009.
Celia Strathdee, defending, said her client was a quiet, hard-working man who still lived with his parents and was currently receiving counselling for mental health problems.
However, she accepted that because of the seriousness of his previous conviction, magistrates would have to consider a custodial sentence.
The case has been adjourned for a pre-sentencing report and Dyke was released on conditional bail, and is due back in court for another hearing at the beginning of next month.
A spokesman for Bath and North East Somerset Council said tackling graffiti was something the local authority took seriously.
He said: "People who daub graffiti on local buildings are a menace to the environment.
"These people blight the appearance of the city and cost the local taxpayer money as our resources are diverted from other street cleaning duties.
"The council will work with the police to identify offenders, like in this case, and ensure that the full force of the law is felt by those who are responsible."