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Good Samaritan steps in to fix Anaheim shop owner's vandalized windows

Rosa Bobbio said she’d fight the city of Anaheim rather than pay a graffiti-related fine. Now city officials say she won’t have to.

After taggers scraped into the windows of her upholstery shop in late 2009, Bobbio was told by Anaheim to get her windows fixed.

Bobbio, who takes a bucket and brush to cover the spray paint that taggers regularly scrawl across her walls, said she couldn’t afford to replace the windows. After the etchings remained for months, the city sent Bobbio fines and fees of $466.66. Bobbio rebelled.

“I told them, 'I’m not gonna pay this fee. I do whatever it takes. It’s not right. If you want to take me to jail, I go to jail.' That’s what I told them,” said Bobbio, who has owned Century Custom Upholstery on South East Street for decades.

But then officials of a Tustin-based graffiti removal business heard about Bobbio’s plight. On Tuesday, WKRP Services began sanding the graffiti off the glass and polishing the windows to sparkling new, and is set to place protective film over her windows Wednesday.

The job, estimated to cost about $1,000, will be performed for free, said Mike Speakman of WKRP Services.

Now that the windows are being fixed, the city has waived the fine. “We’re just glad that we could help Rosa with this issue,” said Anaheim spokeswoman Ruth Ruiz, adding that it is not uncommon for the city to waive a fine once the offending damage has been cleared.

The improvements and protection will make dealing with future glass vandalism easier and cheaper, Bobbio said, but it won’t address the root of the problem.

“What is my guarantee that [the taggers] are not going to come back? “ she said. “There’s no guarantee.”

-- Amina Khan

 
Comments () | Archives (9)

Anaheim can't control the riff-raff destroying property so it will fine the property owners for owning destroyed property? Pretty good racket there.

That was really cool. She should set up some cameras facing out and try to catch these jerks.

I agree with pmg; how was this the shop owner's fault? Plus, I really don't see how the Anaheim spokesperson has the audacity to say, "We're just glad that we could help..." blah, blah, blah. The city of Anaheim wasn't the help. They were just going to add insult to injury by punishing the shop owner for being a victim. What a bunch of bureaucratic jerks! Like the saying goes: "Please; stop helping me!" No wonder people hate government agencies...

Even when law enforcement knows exactly who is committing the wanton destruction of private and public property, political correctness prevents them from requiring the parents and their criminal children to actually pay for all the damage they cause. These vandals know this and literally thumb their noses at the police, property owners, and taxpayers.

How dare the Anaheim city officials say that they helped her?! They were running her over!

victimized twice, first by the taggers, then by the government! There should be a victims fund to help take care of this!

Ruth Ruiz is a moron. The City didn't help this woman with her issue at all. WKRP Services helped her!

All this because of losers who don't know how to live around people without causing destruction and mayhem. I wish taggers could be shot on sight, with stun guns or paintball guns. Bet that would make them think twice.

good job to the company that helped out FOR FREE. in these down times economically, that was a pretty awesome gesture. sure, the company's name is now in the LA times and thousand of people read about it, but they didn't have to help. good for them.

City workers are out of touch. Time to throw out the staff. Start from scratch.


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L.A. Now is the Los Angeles Times’ breaking news section for Southern California. It is produced by more than 80 reporters and editors in The Times’ Metro section, reporting from the paper’s downtown Los Angeles headquarters as well as bureaus in Costa Mesa, Long Beach, San Diego, San Francisco, Sacramento, Riverside, Ventura and West Los Angeles.
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