Town crews clear graffiti; cops hunt for tagger

A graffiti artist known as “ZURG” is on the loose in Mammoth, but law enforcement artists known as “COPS” are in hot pursuit.

Police Chief Dan Watson said officers had not made any arrests in the case as of Wednesday, July 16, but the investigation “is continuing.”

Meanwhile, Town Manager Dan Holler said cleaup crews worked this week to erase the graffiti in advance of Jazz Jubilee, a popular event drawing tourists from throughout the United States.

Officers of the Mammoth Lakes Police Department were still hot on the case.

“We’re following some leads and we expect to find whoever did this,” Watson said.

The graffiti, the first to appear in Mammoth since a graffiti case at the Volcom Brothers Skate Park last October, is black spray paint. In addition to the ZURG tag is another, smaller tag, named “nsf.”

The suspect, when apprehended, would be charged with vandalism, Watson said. If the damage exceeds more than $1,000, the charge would escalate to vandalism/felony.

“We’re not sure when this started,” Watson said.

Social media posts on Facebook began appearing on Monday, with angry follow-up posts of outrage appearing shortly thereafter.

As of Wednesday morning, ZURG had tagged the outside of two empty buildings near the Village, as well as rock facing on a bridge at the Sierra Star golf course.