St. Petersburg police nab accused serial graffiti artist

Dan Matics reports

- Matthew Smith says he understands graffiti is in every city but has blunt words for the self-proclaimed artist accused of tagging his North St. Pete business.

“He just sucks,” Smith said. "Totally talent-less."

St. Petersburg police arrested Monday and charged Julian Grimes, 28, with four felony counts of criminal mischief. Rick Shaw, police spokesperson says detectives have been trailing Grimes for weeks after he tagged four buildings downtown.

"We picked up his finger prints of a paint can left behind," Shaw said.

Smith thinks he hit his business more than once.

“To have it happen like less than 12 hours after you covered it up the first time, it’s really annoying," he said.

Police say they are looking for at least two other suspects.

“We are going to catch you, so just stop.” Shaw said. “If you want to express your artistic opinions, there are other ways to do that.”

Smith, a fan of the world-renowned murals in St. Pete, says he would love to have a mural painted on the wall Grimes is accused of defacing.

“You’re welcome to come back once you’re actually talented,” Smith said. “Just ask permission first.”

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