How much does it cost to arrest a graffiti writer?

February 15th, 2011 by



Low flying helicopter leads to graffiti arrests

Many Sunnyside residents were awoken in the early hours of Monday morning by a low-flying police helicopter.

The helicopter was flying over 42nd and Queens Blvd at 2:00am as police were pursuing three teenagers who were tagging the building above Dunkin’ Donuts.

The police tracked them down and arrested them at 41stand Queens Blvd at 2:30 am. The three—Jeffery Sanchez, Jonathan Aramis and Aileen Mahmoodi- were all charged with criminal mischief; making graffiti; and possession of a graffiti instrument, police said.


According to our records, The NYPD has 6 helicopters. 2 - Bell 412EP's, 3 - Bell 212's and 1 - Bell 206.

According to Conklin's the average hourly flying cost is as follows:

412EP - $1668/hour.
212 - $1439/hour
206 - $516/hour

That's not counting the officer overtime processing these kids, or the fact that the arresting officers were taken off the street probably for the rest of their tour to do the paperwork, etc. Call me crazy but in the grand scheme of things, we're talking $1000-$5000 cost for these 3 arrests.

Now you can argue like every other idiot on the internet does these days that 'they did the crime and should pay the time, expense, etc'. But when you factor in the fact that NYC's now the weed arrest capital of the US, and star tallying up how much it costs to arrest all these petty crooks (even if no ghetto bird is used) and you're talking about perhaps millions of dollars, spent largely to keep minorities in jail or with criminal records that will hold them back some more in life. Millions blown on people catching tags and smoking weed - habits that people generally grow out of on their own as they get older. Seems like a huge, huge waste of money to me.

Mad Props to GasAxe for the research on this one.

4 responses to “How much does it cost to arrest a graffiti writer?”

  1. john doe says:

    You’re very ignorant, maybe you’ll grow out of that one day. I just hope for the world’s sake you have no kids.

  2. Control says:

    I already have 50 kids and they’re coming to your house with baseball bats and a print out of your boring internet post. Please be sure to roll it up and shove it up your ass.

  3. Aileen Mahmoodi says:

    coming from the criminal…
    i can honestly say it was a waste of money and i’m almost sure the police at the precinct agree. As for the ‘time’ for the crime; i’m enjoying my community service at the queens botanical gardens. The punishment is well fit for the ‘crime’, trust 😉

  4. Control says:

    Sounds like a great spot to get through that service crap. Sure beats the nightmare stories I’ve heard about Rikers.

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  • About The Author

    Bad Guy Joe

    Bad Guy Joe
    Bad Guy Joe knows more about the NYC underground than anyone else on or below the surface of this planet. He has spent nearly 30 years sneaking into NYC's more forbidden locations. When not underground, he's probably bitching about politicians or building something digital. 
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