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Prof charged over graffiti; Bizarre phrases were scratched into the paintwork of cars.


A NEWCASTLE University professor has been hauled before the courts for allegedly scratching graffiti on to luxury cars.


Prof Stephen Graham is accused of vandalising 24 cars in the suburb of Jesmond, Newcastle.

The 47-year-old, of Lansdowne Gardens, Jesmond, has been charged with four counts of causing criminal damage and is due to appear before Newcastle Magistrates' Court on October 3. The professor, who works at Newcastle University, was arrested following an incident on Monday, August 27, around the Northumberland Gardens area.

And, rather than the usual tags and swear words left by vandals, it is alleged a screwdriver was used to etch words like "very silly", "really wrong" and "arbitrary" on parked vehicles s, causing pounds 20,s 000 worth of damage.

Among the damaged cars were a Mercedes SLK, BMW 520, a BMW X5 and a Land Rover. Residents were left with repair bills of thousands of pounds.

Christine Carr, 55, a civil servant who is married with two children, had the words "really wrong" scratched in capital letters into her silver Mercedes Kompressor. She said at the time: "I'd just got back from holiday in Spain, I didn't notice anything immediately when I got home but when I went to move my car this morning I saw a leaflet [on it].

"At first I thought I had a parking ticket, but when I looked closer I could see that the car had actually been vandalised and a leaflet from the police was on there saying there had been damage."

Graham was held on suspicion of causing criminal damage and released on bail. He was charged yesterday and given his court date.

A graduate of Southampton University, Graham is based at Newcastle University's school of Architecture, Planning and Landscape, and specialises in the study of cities and society.


UPSET Christine Carr's Mercedes SLK Kompressor was targeted. Top, Professor Stephen Graham has now been charged with causing criminal damage
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Publication:Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)
Date:Sep 15, 2012
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