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Miami Using High Tech Way To Battle Graffiti

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MIAMI (CBS4) – There is a new way one South Florida city is fighting one of the hardest forms of vandalism to stop- graffiti.

It’s a problem for businesses like Mekka Miami which operates 5 dance clubs and lounges in Downtown Miami

“One of the problems that you have when you go to an underdeveloped area is graffiti. It is a constant problem,” said Michael Slyder, C.F.O. of Mekka Miami.

The problem is evident right outside the club where vandals have defaced the clubs exterior.

“Customers and residents, when they see Graffiti, it sends the wrong message,” said Slyder.

People can see graffiti on abandoned buildings and even new construction.

Covering it up really doesn’t do much so the Community Redevelopment Agency has purchased a device that can detect graffiti as it happens.

“It is merely a tool for the police to use for them to have the capability to catch these guys in the act,” said Marc Sarnoff, Commissioner for District 2 in Miami.

Police say the device is a sensor. Its sole purpose is to keep a watchful eye for anyone who will crack open a can of spray paint and start vandalizing. Officials don’t want the public to know exactly how it works or what the sensors look like for fear of it too being vandalized, but we know it serves as an alarm system.

“If someone is vandalizing a particular wall where it can be detected, it sends a signal to us. We get a text indicating exactly where it is taking place,” said Commander David Sanchez with the Miami Police Department.

The device would allow South Florida’s business owners to worry about their own bottom line and not acts of vandalism.

“We don’t want this anymore in our neighbor hoods,” said Slyder.

The Community Redevelopment Agency plans to install several dozen of them over time at a cost of $25,000 each.

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