ChromaticSoul :: The Blog

Photographer Documenting Graffiti Artists Charged With A Crime

Posted on: 8 May 2010

I just caught an interesting piece over on Photo Editor. It’s about a photographer who has encountered some legal difficulties while photographing graffiti. I found it interesting because a few years back I had played with the idea of photographing graffiti. The main difference is I was planning on photographing just the “art” and not the “artist.”

On February 4th 2010, photographer Jonas Lara an Art Center Graduate and former United States Marine, was photographing 2 graffiti artists painting a mural in Los Angeles. An LAPD helicopter spotted the group, then a patrol car came in and arrested Jonas and the Graffiti Artists (or vandals depending on how you feel about graffiti). He was initially charged with Felony Vandalism which was later lowered to a misdemeanor and then changed to Aiding and Abetting which carries a 1 year sentence. His jury trial is set for May 12th (Tuesday).

This story has been bouncing around the internet for a little while now and I’ve wanted to write about it, but not without talking to a lawyer first. PDN has a story (here) that does little more than gloss over Jonas’s side of the case. I wanted to understand what rights journalists have in these types of situations so I asked the Photo Attorney, Carolyn E. Wright a couple question.

Read the rest of the article here.

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