Posts Tagged ‘Spray-Painting

15
Jan
09

ESPN Gets MMA Fighter Busted

monsonanarchyTurns out that a ESPN photo feature can land you in big trouble with the law if you aren’t careful. That’s a lesson mixed-martial arts fighter Jeff Monson is learning the hard way. In a photograph for ESPN the Magazine’s December issue Monson is pictured spray-painting an anarchist symbol on the Washington state Capitol. On Wednesday a warrant was sworn out for Monson, charging him with first-degree malicious mischief, a Class B felony carrying a maximum penalty of up to 10 years in prison and a $20,000 fine. Reportedly, the cost to clean up the graffiti was $19,000.

The case doesn’t look great for Monson, as he is very clearly holding a spray-can and even has some of the red paint on his fingers in the photo. As well, the caption for the photo was very ambigious, “On a recent night in Olympia, Monson suddenly pulled out a spray can and tagged the state capitol.”

Police have been actively searching for the people who have spray-painted various graffiti on the Capitol since late November. A State Patrol and Olympia police detective noticed Monson in some surveillance footage, but it wasn’t until ESPN published this photo that they were able to confirm it. The other graffiti on the Capitol building included other anarchy symbols, a peace sign and phrases like “No War” and “No Poverty,” pretty subversive stuff!

Monson, who is the World Grappling Champion and whose fighting nickname is “The Snowman” took responsibility for the graffiti but insisted that it has a purpose, to protest the Iraq war and the economic inequality.

“Every great movement in the United States from civil rights, women’s rights, the labor movement, has been the result of people standing up and breaking the law, refusing to stand at the back of the bus, refusing the stand aside when the government asks you to get off their property,” Monson said. “And now, these people are seen as pioneers. But at the time, they were criminals, they were literally criminals. I’m not here to advocate for myself, at some point you have to stand up.”

[The News Tribune]




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