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Archive for Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Erasing vandalism’s stains

Spray paint at church tests Prosoco Inc. products

Daryl Ortgies, formulations chemist with Lawrence-based Prosoco Inc., applies a solvent that he helped develop to remove graffiti from the west wall of Corpus Christi Catholic Church, 6001 Bob Billings Parkway. Nine Lawrence churches have been damaged by graffiti since last weekend.

Daryl Ortgies, formulations chemist with Lawrence-based Prosoco Inc., applies a solvent that he helped develop to remove graffiti from the west wall of Corpus Christi Catholic Church, 6001 Bob Billings Parkway. Nine Lawrence churches have been damaged by graffiti since last weekend.

August 1, 2007

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Lawrence company cleans graffiti

A Lawrence company puts its' best science to work, removing spray-painted graffiti that deface a church. Prosoco is cleaning four areas that had been tagged at Corpus Christi Catholic Church over the weekend. Enlarge video

Three questions with ... Bruce Boyer, from Prosoco Inc.

Bruce Boyer, from Prosoco Inc., answers questions about what folks can do to protect themselves from graffiti, clean up after graffiti or otherwise deal with graffiti. Enlarge video

They've dissolved fake blood left behind by King Kong atop the World Trade Center and scrubbed away billions of microbial algae, lichens and molds from the porous limestone walls of Allen Fieldhouse.

Tuesday morning, it was the spray-painted graffiti on the back of Corpus Christi Catholic Church that proved to be no match for products from Prosoco Inc., the Lawrence-based company whose products are known nationwide for cleansing brick, masonry and stone.

A team of specialists - a corporate officer, a testing director and a formulations chemist - took on the work for free, using it as a real-life case study for new products designed to remove the painted "tagging" that ranks among the most stubborn of stains.

"It's the newest, most durable paint that's out there," said Bruce Boyer, Prosoco vice president, who was on the scene Tuesday at 6001 Bob Billings Parkway. "It's the big paint manufacturers trying to make the most idiot-proof, durable paint they can, and then the kids get a hold of it, and it's really some of the meanest, nastiest stuff to take off.

"This is a good training field."

Prosoco, which moved from the Kansas City area to the East Hills Business Park in 1999, has 86 employees dedicated to coming up with products strong enough to eliminate growths, stains and other discolorations from a variety of surfaces.

The graffiti at Corpus Christi showed up over the weekend; the church was one of eight that reported being hit with spray-painted vandalism. Another report turned up Tuesday - this one at Lawrence Baptist Temple, 3201 W. 31st St., which had graffiti spray-painted on an exterior wall and on a bus parked on the property.

While less than 5 percent of the solutions and other products Prosoco sells each year are used to clean up after such vandalism, Boyer said, the jobs account for more than 20 percent of the time and money spent on cleansing jobs annually. Last year, privately held Prosoco recorded sales of more than $20 million.

At Corpus Christi, the Prosoco team spent much of Tuesday assessing the problems, treating affected areas and preparing to return today. Initial treatments with a paint stripper - Defacer Eraser Graffiti Wipe - were followed up with a medium-intensity power wash and proved enough to remove all of the spray paint from two metal garage doors at the back of the church.

Two areas of brick proved more difficult to clean. Daryl Ortgies, a formulations chemist, treated those sites with a second product: Enviro Klean Safety Peel 3, a solvent-soaked paste that he painted on the bricks like a facial mud mask.

The solvent is absorbed by the brick, so that it can dissolve atomized paint particles and then evaporate - leaving the mask to be washed away, just like in a salon.

"Same scenario," Boyer said.

Prosoco products have been used to clean a number of prominent landmarks, including the U.S. Capitol, Grand Central Station, the Empire State Building and Carnegie Hall. Soon to be added to the list will be the Watkins Community Museum of History, 1047 Mass.

Comments

Confrontation 6 years, 8 months ago

Ceallach: You're just another Christian with your panties in a wad. If you are such a good Christian, then how can you not believe there's a possibility that this is a sign from your God? Perhaps you are a bad parent, which is why you are so defensive.

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Sigmund 6 years, 8 months ago

Max1, while motive may be considered when deciding to charge a hate crime (prosecutorial discretion), it is NOT a requirement of being charged and convicted for a hate crime. Here is a link to the US Department of Justice, while it isn't CNN, it does have some credibility. http://www.usdoj.gov/crt/crim/247fin.htm

Feel free not to believe. In fact, try armed robbery, burning crosses in black families yards, painting swastika's on synagogues, kidnapping, shoplifting, or any other crime you can think of and then tell the judge it was all just a "prank." He or she may find you not guilty by reason of mental defect, but will not find you not guilty by reason of the "prank defense."

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max1 6 years, 8 months ago

"Sorry max1, the motive is irrelevant . . . If they are caught I strongly suggest they don't hire you as their attorney!"-Sigmund

Motive is irrelevant? You are wrong -- motive is the only thing relevant in determining whether or not a hate crime has been committed, and since I am not an attorney I don't think you should worry your little mind about that.

During the investigation of the 9 churches burned in Alabama: February 3, 2007 http://www.cnn.com/2006/US/02/03/friday/index.html The FBI is opening a civil rights investigation. It's hard to see a racial motive here. It would seem to be religiously motivated, however. The agent in charge of the Birmingham office says that they want to make sure it's not a hate crime

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Sigmund 6 years, 8 months ago

Sorry max1, the motive is irrelevant all that is needed is for these punks to face and be convicted of a Federal hate crime is that they intended the vandalism. The "Ooops, we just burnt that cross in the black families home or we just painted swastika on the synagogue as a prank" won't relieve them of culpability. If they are caught I strongly suggest they don't hire you as their attorney!

.

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max1 6 years, 8 months ago

' Lonestar1, the FBI disagrees with your assessment. The FBI lists church vandalism as a "hate crime" ' -Sigmund

. . . unless it is determined to be a "prank".

March 8, 2006 http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/11726024/ Students say church arsons meant as 'a joke'

March 10, 2006 http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2006/03/10/national/main1388935.shtml A group of three college students charged in connection with a string of Alabama church fires that apparently began as a prank may have been fueled by alcohol, authorities said. Federal and state authorities have not commented on a possible motive, beyond evidence that an apparent prank spun out of control.

Mar. 08, 2006 http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,1171196,00.html It came as quite a shock to law enforcement and residents alike Wednesday when three Birmingham, Alabama-area college students, all from upscale families and students at a private, religious-based college, were arrested for allegedly setting nine rural Baptist churches on fire in February."It's hard to believe it was these kinds of kids," says Greene County Sheriff Johnny Isaac. According to court documents filed Wednesday in Alabama, Russell Lee DeBusk Jr., 19, Benjamin Nathan Moseley, 19, and Mathew Lee Cloyd, 20, say they set five small, isolated churches about 50 miles southwest of their Birmingham homes ablaze Feb. 3 as a joke after a night of deer hunting and drinking. Then they set four similar churches on fire Feb. 7 some 100 miles west of Birmingham to try to throw investigators off any clues. All three suspects grew up in upscale Birmingham suburbs of Vestavia and Hoover, the former the neighborhood of ex-Healthsouth CEO Richard Scrushy, one of Birmingham's richest and most notorious residents, who beat federal white-collar crime charges last year of cooking Healthsouth's books. The suspects knew each other from attending Birmingham-Southern College, a private and exclusive liberal arts college affiliated with the United Methodist Church since its founding in 1856. Moseley and DeBusk were fellow drama and theater students at Birmingham-Southern, which has a small enrollment of 1,500 students. Cloyd also attended Birmingham-Southern before transferring to the University of Alabama-Birmingham (UAB) last year to become a pre-med student. At this point, investigators say the "thrill" motive is the best way they can explain it.

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Sigmund 6 years, 8 months ago

Lonestar1, the FBI disagrees with your assessment. The FBI lists church vandalism as a "hate crime" and believes that Title 18, U.S.C., Section 247, prohibits "intentional defacement, damage, or destruction of any religious real property, because of the religious, racial, or ethnic characteristics of that property." Punishment for such offense starts at one year Federal prison time (Leavenworth not Douglas County jail), a fine, or both. http://miami.fbi.gov/hate.htm http://miami.fbi.gov/statutes/title_18/section247.htm

Those pastors, partitioner's, or local LEO's who wish can contact the local FBI field office using the link. http://kansascity.fbi.gov/contact.htm

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toefungus 6 years, 8 months ago

Could any of these churches been against the registry?

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Lonestar1 6 years, 8 months ago

This is no hate crime, it's just plain rude behavior. Once caught, an example should be made of them. Maybe scrubbing sidewalks down town, with a toothbrush for 8 hours a day until the job was done. I agree that a large part of it is on the parenting. If you are taught to respect others, you don't wander the night with a can of spray paint. Some jail time may be good shock therapy.

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Ceallach 6 years, 8 months ago

You know very well how that is hate speech. You would not let such comments about other religions or belief systems go by without challenging them, now would you? Your comments are just "tolerated" because you make them against Christians. The majority of your posts reflect your anger toward Christianity, the Bible and any interpretation of either one (other than your own).

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macon47 6 years, 8 months ago

YEP , THATS COOL , FIRST TEACH YOUR KIDS TO HATE GOD, then teach them to rat out others for fun and profit. thats what makes lawrence great, god haters and rat finks

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Confrontation 6 years, 8 months ago

How is that hate speech? Do you like bad parenting and kids who behave like idiots?

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Ceallach 6 years, 8 months ago

Confrontation (Anonymous) says:

With this happening at so many churches, I can't believe that churchgoers don't see it as a sign from God. "Hey, your children are idiots and you're horrible parents." There's the sign.


Talk about hate speech!!!

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KsTwister 6 years, 8 months ago

Offer a reward ---someone will slip up and talk then.

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macon47 6 years, 8 months ago

most of these kids parents are sitting out in the back yard smoking dope and dont have a clue what their degenerate children are doing. just more god hating liberals with no moreal values

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Agnostick 6 years, 8 months ago

Screw that! Hey, the story I wanna hear more about the fake "King Kong" blood on the ol' WTC towers. :p

Agnostick agnostick@excite.com http://www.uscentrist.org

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jmadison 6 years, 8 months ago

Hate crimes alive and well in Lawrence, KS, USA.

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bobberboy 6 years, 8 months ago

Thanks Daryl, keep up the good work.

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Confrontation 6 years, 8 months ago

With this happening at so many churches, I can't believe that churchgoers don't see it as a sign from God. "Hey, your children are idiots and you're horrible parents." There's the sign.

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logrithmic 6 years, 8 months ago

This is so sad. Why must people spray crap on buildings? It's very wrong.

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spywell 6 years, 8 months ago

This was a silver gray paint. They might be hack'in the paint to get high, that was what I told my freind and they sprayed the side of his van where it sat on the street.

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spywell 6 years, 8 months ago

About 3 weeks ago, there was an incident on 18th street by Naismith Hall, where a freind of mine's van got sprayed with paint. He thought is was some punk kids in the house down the street. They go to Lawrence High and they are running the streets at night and these could be the same kids.

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