Local Artist Takes the Life of His Own Art Because of Vandalism

Anyone who hasn’t been living under a rock in Los Angeles knows that one of the “Black Mamba’s” greatest rivals, LeBron James, has signed with the Los Angeles Lakers for a 4 year contract– which is no doubt a historical move for a team who hasn’t managed to win an NBA Finals Championship in nearly a decade.

This new era for the Lakers has inspired fans from all over the southland to express their excitement and anticipation for the coming ‘king.’

Known for his memorial style impressions of late legends such as Anthony Bourdain, and Chester Bennington, muralist Jonas Never took his artistic skills to the side of a local Venice Beach BBQ joint to welcome the Laker’s newest teammate and enlisted his own teammate, graffiti artist Fernando Valdez, to help letter “The King of L.A.”

The creative collaboration took the artists two days to complete, but nearly immediately after it’s unveiling- the celebratory street art was a target for relentless vandalism.

It’s not 100% clear if this ‘hater’ graffiti was fueled by true loyal fans of Kobe Bryant, who are still bitterly mourning the loss of his retirement and find LeBron’s arrival that repulsive, or if vandals ready to make a quick buck were inspired by a post on Twitter offering a $300 bounty for anyone willing to deface the mural.

After the fourth time Jonas came to restore the mural back to its original glory, the artist was forced to smear his latest masterpiece in the color of surrender- a bland and boring white- as if he was sent out by one of the city’s graffiti abatement teams.

Although street art and graffiti are not always illegal, any damage over $400 could be charged as a crime. According to California Penal Code §594, Spraying on public property or private property without proper permission can get you in serious legal trouble with hefty fines and even land you in jail. Let’s also not forget that vandalism isn’t just defined as what comes out of a spray paint can, but when someone ‘maliciously’ damages, destroys, or defaces property he or she does not own.

In a city that is known for it’s street art scene and pop art style Instagram photo-ops around every neighborhood, it’s best to skip the temptation of leaving your ‘artistic’ mark with a can of spray if you don’t know the legal consequences of violating the laws of California.

If you or someone you know has been charged with the crime of vandalism, contact us 24 hours a day at (310) 448-1529 or contact us online to schedule a consultation. Our office is conveniently located in the Westside Towers in Los Angeles, within minutes of Santa Monica, Beverly Hills, Westwood, and steps away from the Expo/Bundy Station. We have flexible hours and weekend appointments, and we will visit you in jail to discuss your case.

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