Lake Worth, FL – Police have arrested a 24-year-old man in connection with multiple incidents of anti-police graffiti that recently appeared around Lake Worth.
The Palm Beach Sheriff’s Office (PBSO) responded to numerous reports of vandalism on Saturday after graffiti was discovered by homeowners and property owners, WPEC reported.
All of the graffiti contained anti-police or pro-Communist messages.
One particular tag read “Kill a cop, save a life.” Another said “All power to the working class.”
Almost all of the graffiti included images of a hammer and sickle as well.
Oswald Blair contacted deputies after discovering the anti-cop graffiti on his own fence, WPBF reported.
He provided PBSO deputies with surveillance footage from his property that clearly showed Tyler Miller spray painting “Kill a cop, save a life” on Blair’s fence in between hiding from passing vehicles on the nearby roadway.
Police identified Miller as someone they had previously investigated, after he attempted to buy a Chinese SKS semi-automatic rifle online in 2013, WPEC reported.
On that occasion, an employee contacted authorities after they saw Miller, with his grandmother, filling out paperwork in a gun store for the online purchase of the rifle.
He was wearing a Chinese military uniform complete with magazine pouches, WPEC reported.
When deputies went to Miller’s residence to interview him 11 days later, he answered the door wearing a Chinese military cap, pins with hammer and sickle insignias, and had a military-style gas mask strapped across his body, according to the police report.
Miller was cooperative with the investigating deputies and showed them his bedroom upon request.
“It should be noted that his room was well kept and was decorated with Russian and Chinese Communist type paraphernalia to include a large framed photo of Lenin and a red and yellow hammer and sickle flat,” the investigating deputy wrote in the police report.
The deputy also noted that Miller had 20 rounds of ammunition loaded into stripper clips designed for SKS rifles and a gas mask in his bedroom, according to WPEC.
After reviewing the surveillance camera footage of the man spray painting graffiti on the fence, deputies recognized Miller as the subject of an “Officer Safety” BOLO (Be On Lookout) put out by the Boynton Beach Police Department on Aug. 21, 2018, WPEC reported.
The warning was written after officers stopped Miller’s 2007 red Toyota Prius and found “two green ski masks, unloaded firearm with loaded magazines (holstered in center armrest), AK-47 rounds w/loaded magazines (trunk area of vehicle), a piece of cardboard with a pig cut out that said ‘PBSO’ along with a cardboard cutout of a raised revolutionary fist, and a camouflage jacket,” according to the police report.
Miller told the Boynton officer that the masks and signs were leftovers from an anti-police brutality march he had attended and said the ammo was for a gun he shoots at the range.
The 24-year-old was arrested and charged with six counts of damage to property and criminal mischief in connection with the graffiti, WPEC reported.
Miller was released on his own recognizance, according to PBSO.
Authorities are continuing to investigate three other people who may have been involved in the vandalism.