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NUISANCE CRIMES / COURT

In 2009, the City of Asheville implemented Nuisance Court to handle “quality of life” misdemeanors like public intoxication, panhandling, graffiti and skateboarding on sidewalks.

Considered a “therapeutic court,” Nuisance Court sentences are handed out in community service rather than jail time and participants are often required to attend programs that address substance abuse.

Graffiti is a top concern for downtown business and property owners and is typically addressed in Nuisance Court. A recent report shows that Nuisance Court is working, particularly when it comes to graffiti offenders.

Since 2009, 20 defendants have participated in nuisance court for graffiti charges. Of those, 12 have successfully completed their community service hours and six are working towards completion. Two defendants failed to appear or comply and either had an arrest warrant issued or had their sentence activated. As of May 1, a Buncombe County search shows that none of the above defendants have been charged with any new offenses of Injury to Real Property, Defacing a Public Building or Injury to Personal Property since participating in the Nuisance Court Program.

Asheville GreenWorks does great work on graffiti removal throughout Buncombe County. Find out more about their Graffiti Busters Program.