Graffiti, sadly enough, is a constant problem in most cities. Not only is it illegal, but it is unsightly and can be expensive to remove. To help combat this problem, the City of Lancaster has a Graffiti Removal team to help take down graffiti in a timely and professional fashion.
If you are the victim of vandalism involving graffiti, or if you see graffiti on public property adjacent to or near your property, please call the Lancaster Sheriff's Station first at (661) 948-8466 to file a report. The vast majority of "taggers" aren't just one-hit-wonders - they vandalize time after time until they are caught. Since most taggers operate in a specific area, police reports are critical to tracking and catching these criminals.
If for any reason you feel that you cannot wait for a report to be taken before removing the graffiti, be sure to take detailed color photographs of the graffiti before removing it, and submit the photos (or color copies) to the officer when the vandalism report is taken.
To report graffiti for removal, call the Graffiti Removal hotline at (661) 723-5977, or send an email to DSDintern2@cityoflancasterca.org (subject "Graffiti Removal"). You will need to provide the exact address or nearest cross-streets and good description of the location, the position of the graffiti at that location (i.e. on a wall, a sign, the sidewalk, etc.), and a description of the graffiti itself, including color, material used (if known), and if the graffiti contains any obscenities. The hotline is only staffed during City business hours, but a voicemail box is available for you to leave this information at any time.
A signed City of Lancaster Graffiti Removal Release of Liability Form [PDF, 7Kb] must be filed before the crew can remove graffiti from private property. You may file this form in advance with the Public Works Department, or you may provide it when the removal crew arrives.
If possible, please provide a color match and paint for the crew to ensure that the removal will blend in with the "clean" part of the vandalized asset. If you cannot provide a color match and paint or are unwilling to do so, the graffiti removal crew will use a standard in-stock color. While they will make every effort to match colors as closely as possible, the crew cannot guarantee a seamless match.
You may contact Graffiti Removal for property that does not belong to you as well, such as on street signs, on lampposts, at City parks, or anywhere else that you see graffiti. For these situations, be sure to mention when reporting that you are not the owner of the property.
Remember, though the crew makes every effort to respond to all requests for graffiti removal within 48 hours, this is not always possible. If you prefer, you may remove graffiti from your property yourself at your expense.