Potential crooks are figuratively caught red-handed all the time, from kids breaking into a box of cookies before dinner to the more serious grown-up crimes. But has anyone ever been caught with red-colored hands? Probably. But maybe not like this.
Early Thursday morning at 3:20, officers from the New York Police Department arrested 17-year-old Mike Kushnir and an unnamed 15-year-old female friend after they received a 911 call. The two teenagers have been accused of vandalizing the 114-year-old Soldiers' and Sailors' Memorial Monument on Riverside Drive and West 89th Street on Manhattan's Upper West Side. The state landmark has been in existence since Memorial Day 1902. Kushnir and his friend allegedly defaced it with obscene language and lewd drawings, using red paint.
As the two attempted to flee, patrolling police officers easily identified them as the alleged culprits. The arresting officer, Sgt. Nathaniel Herman, told the New York Daily News that he noticed the same red paint used in the vandalism on Kushnir's skateboard and on his friend's arm. Herman said, "When responding to a graffiti call, the suspects are usually long gone when you get there. But this time we got them, literally, red-handed." Plus, the pair allegedly scribed their names on the monument.
The two have been charged with multiple counts of felony criminal mischief (the friend was charged as a juvenile), and they have also been linked to and charged for previous instances of graffiti.