Update: Businesses, statues hit with spray paint – Multiple buildings including Kingston City Hall targeted by vandalism

Editor’s note: This article has been updated since it was originally published on Friday, Dec. 29, 2023, at 12:39 p.m. Please see bottom of article for most recently updated information.

Local police are currently investigating “multiple acts of vandalism in the form of graffiti” that occurred overnight from Wednesday, Dec. 27 to Thursday, Dec. 28, 2023, in downtown Kingston.

According to Kingston Police, vandals targeted “several locations” operated by the City of Kingston, including City Hall. Further, “multiple” local business and private property locations were also vandalized, police said in a social media post on Thursday, Dec. 28, 2023.

Police did not say which other City-owned properties were hit by vandals, or whether all of the acts of vandalism took the form of neon orange spray-painted graffiti. Kingstonist has followed up with Kingston Police to request more information.

Anyone with information regarding these incidents is asked to contact Kingston Police by calling 613-549-4660. Those who wish to remain anonymous should call the Kingston Police general number (613-549-4660 ext. 0) and request anonymity.

Additionally, police would like to hear from anyone who may have property that was damaged by similar acts of vandalism in the same timeframe. Those people are asked to contact Kingston Police at 613-549-4660, or to submit a report online here.

Finally, Kingston Police are asking business owners and residents in the downtown core who may have security footage of the area throughout the evening and night of Wednesday, Dec. 27 and into the morning of Thursday, Dec. 28, 2023, to “please report anything suspicious that may have been captured.”

“This applies not only to businesses and residences that were affected, but also [to] anyone in downtown Kingston,” police said.

Kingstonist will provide further coverage of these incidents as more information becomes available.

Update (Tuesday, Jan. 2, 2024, at 4:25 p.m.)
Among the City of Kingston-owned properties targeted by vandalism in late December are the Central Branch of the Kingston Frontenac Public Library (KFPL) on Johnson Street, and the sculptures located in “the hub” near the intersection of Princess and Division Streets.

These incidents are on top of those that occurred at Kingston City Hall (see above) over night sometime from the evening of Wednesday, Dec. 27 into the morning hours of Thursday, Dec. 28, 2023. According to the City, the parking lot and windows at the KFPL Central Branch were defaced by vandals, and the public art installations as part of ‘The Wilds of Kingston‘ that have become popular among selfie-taking residents and tourists — more commonly known known as the birdman and the pigeonman statues — were also hit with spray paint, particularly the avian-themed statue.

“City crews went out right away after finding out about the graffiti that took place overnight Wednesday — and cleaned a number of areas, both City-owned and privately owned — from City Hall to the Hub,” the City of Kingston relayed on behalf of the Facilities Management and Construction Services departments.

For their part, Kingston Police outlined that the investigation into the incidents of vandalism remains ongoing, and that further reports of such incidents are expected.

More neon orange spray paint defaces the storefront of two local small businesses in downtown Kingston, Thrifty Girl and Moxie and Mine. Submitted photo.

“Kingston Police are investigating numerous acts of vandalism with the belief that many are related based on the spray paint that was used. Investigators are in the process of identifying more instances of graffiti that may or may not be involved, so a final tally is difficult to provide at this time,” said Constable Ash Gutheinz, Media Relations Officer for Kingston Police.

“There are likely more incidents that have yet to be reported since some residents that reside in the downtown core may still be away for the holidays. All the incidents that were reported involved the use of a similar type of spray paint.”

Gutheinz reiterated Kingston Police’s call for anyone in the downtown core — be they residents, business owners, property owners, or visitors — that may have security footage of any suspicious activity from Wednesday, Dec. 27 to Thursday, Dec. 28, 2023, to submit that footage to police (see above for details).

Kingstonist has spoken with a few business owners in downtown Kingston were targeted by the spray paint vandalism and are therefore looking at steep costs for repairs and clean-up efforts. According to some business owners, there is one Kingston-based business that embraced the “spirit of the season,” which is helping out affected business owners in a surprising way. Further coverage of this matter is expected in the days to come.

2 thoughts on “Update: Businesses, statues hit with spray paint – Multiple buildings including Kingston City Hall targeted by vandalism

  • Apparently a small local business called Paint Beast helped cover up some of it also, not just city crews. Perhaps look into that and give them some credit, and hopefully draw attention to their business.

    • Hi Kate,
      We were already on it, and we’ve just published an article on Paint Beast helping other businesses clean up for free, as well as another local company, Design On Kingston! :)

      Tori Stafford

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