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Oakland Business Owner Says He's Fed Up After Store Gets Repeatedly Vandalized

A longtime Oakland business owner is fed up after he says that his store has been repeatedly targeted by graffiti vandals.

The owner said he’s spent thousands tackling the problem and is getting zero help from the city or from police.

Ian Taha, owner of Metro by T Mobile store in Oakland cell phone store says it’s been nearly impossible to keep his store looking nice.

“This business has been getting vandalized by graffiti for the last 12 months and it’s getting worse,” he said.

Graffiti vandals have been hitting Taha’s business every few weeks, tagging the walls and even the windows of his International Boulevard shop.

“I understand graffiti can be art, but not when it’s all on our business that we don’t want to be on our business,” he said.

Taha added that he has invested in an elaborate video surveillance system, capturing the culprits in the act.

He said that he’s filed numerous police reports that contain the videos but says police and the city have not helped.

“We need help we can’t do it by ourselves. We have the images, we have the evidence, we have everything, we just now need somebody to take the case and start prosecuting,” he said.

Taha’s store isn’t the only one getting hit, other businesses on International Blvd are too. He said that many of his neighbors have simply given up on cleaning up.

Taha told NBC Bay Area that he’s spent thousands of dollars on cleaning supplies and countless hours scrubbing. He’s not certain how much longer he can keep up.

“The last thing we want to do is relocate out of the city and it’ll become another vacant property in the city of Oakland and I think that’s the last thing anybody wants,” he said.

Taha hopes the city tackles the problem soon. He’s offering a $1,000 reward for information leading to an arrest.

Source: NBC Bay Area

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