MySpace leads to vandalism arrests

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May 11, 2007

AUGUSTA, Ga.---Four people have been arrested in connection with vandalism at downtown's Miller Theater.

Domnick Watterson and William Pasquale face felony burglary charges for painting symbols and messages on the inside walls.

They're still looking for more than a dozen others who were also there, caught on surveillance video.

Deputies say two of them were James Carver and Cory Perry, and the popular website MySpace led them to these teenagers.

Now they're hoping the site will help them find everyone else.

People put all sorts of information on their MySpace pages. And in this case, investigators say some unique phrases on Domnick Watterson's page also showed up in the graffiti on the inside of the Miller Theater.

Property crimes investigator Tony Walden says he's never seen anything quite like this graffiti.

"This is not the same types of writings we've seen downtown," he said. "It's something more disturbing, really."

Disturbing messages, like "death", "hell is waiting for you", and "all who enters has lost all hope" were spray-painted on the walls, along with pictures and symbols.

Investigators believed there was some relationship between the vandalism, the kids caught on camera as they broke into the building, and the nearby underage club, Sector 7G.

They started to search the club's MySpace page and found a band name that appeared on the walls of the Miller. But going through the page's 4,000 friends was taking time.

That's when an anonymous tip led them to Domnick Watterson's MySpace page.

"I'm glad someone called to help, or we'd still be searching through four thousand pages of people's backgrounds," Inv. Walden said.

He says Domnick Watterson's page has crucial ties to the crime. References to "purple god", a skull and crossbones, and part of his screen name, Vicious, all showed up inside the theater.

"A lot of these people are very proud of their work and they like to advertise and put it on the internet," Inv. Walden said.

That advertising helped investigators piece it all together. Three people broke in on April 27 and wrote all the messages. Then the next night, 20 teenagers came over, probably from Sector 7G, to see the work.

Once investigators figured it all out, they made their arrests. So far they have four people in custody.

Investigators are still looking for another person they believe vandalized the theater, as well as the rest of the teenagers seen in the surveillance video.

Not too long ago, Carlos Calderon was also arrested for vandalism because of his MySpace page.

Deputies say he wrote BSEN and KCW on buildings all over town, including the historic Woodrow Wilson House, then took pictures and posted them on the internet.

The page said he was trying to start a graffiti culture in Augusta.

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