Vandal Busted by Cell Phone

Citizens supplement 911 calls with cellphone pictures

A vigilant subway rider caught a vandal in the act late last week, and has the pictures to prove it! While 18-year old Queens resident Andrew Morello sat silently scratching graffiti into a subway window pane, a watchful fellow rider sneakily pulled out their cell phone and snapped a few pictures.

After turning them over to the Crime Stoppers hot line, the NYPD managed to identify the kid - who "had been arrested in March on a graffiti charge after spray-painting the word 'Shelly' on a parked commercial vehicle in Queens". The NYPD use of cell phones has been their latest obsession, after Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly's announcement earlier this summer that "citizens should supplement their 911 calls with cellphone pictures."

Since then, people have snapped everything from perverts on trains to aggressive drivers. According to City Room, shortly after Kelly made his announcement, "a bicyclist was knocked over by a truck. The bicyclist took a photograph of the license plate. The driver was eventually arrested."

For poor Andrew Morello, he's facing charges of criminal mischief, making graffiti, resisting arrest and possession of graffiti instruments. We don't have word on Shelly's take on the crime, but have to wonder who that lucky lady is.

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