Charles Bridge vandal turns himself in to Czech police

A young man has come forward to police and confessed to spray painting Eurovision song lyrics on the Prague landmark.


Written by ČTK Published on 11.07.2021 09:56:00 (updated on 11.07.2021) Reading time: 2 minutes

A young man has confessed to spray painting a section of the historic Charles Bridge and turned himself into police on Saturday, according to Czech Police.

He recognized himself in CCTV video footage published by media.

The police now also know the identity of the girl who was there with him.

Since both of them are underage, the police cannot elaborate on the case, Czech Police have tweeted.

"Late in the afternoon, a youth who recognized himself from media broadcasts came to the local police station and confessed to having sprayed the bridge," the police said.

"We also know the identify of the girl who was with him from the footage. Since both of them are underage, the law does not allow us to provide more information on the case," they added.

The crime can carry a sentence of up to three years in prison if the suspects are convicted. Since the pair are minors, they will likely receive a lighter punishment.

The damage has been estimated at 100,000 crowns.

Police said on Saturday morning they wanted to question a man and a woman they tracked down thanks to CCTV footage.

At noon, the police released the footage, calling on people to come forward with any information on the young duo via the police emergency line.

On Friday, police found text in English spray painted in turquoise with a dye that cannot be washed away. The graffiti is on the right wall of the bridge towards Prague Castle, near the plinth of the Saint Augustin statue.

This morning, a restorer started removing the graffiti. He said the work would be finished in a few days.

Vandals have spray painted on the bridge in the past, too, most recently in late May and early June.

Last December, the Prague Municipal Court upheld a 12-month suspended sentence to German tourist Benjamin Wittig for having sprayed a five-meter by two-meter pattern on one of the Charles Bridge pillars along with his brother Niclas Steiger in July, 2019. The court also upheld a fine of 100,000 crowns and expulsion from the Czech Republic for five years for Wittig. The same penalty was meted out to Steiger.

Charles Bridge, originally called the "Stone Bridge," was founded in 1357 under the reign of Charles IV, King of Bohemia and Roman Emperor. At the end of the 17th and in the 18th centuries, the bridge turned into a splendid gallery of baroque statues of saints. More were added in the 19th century. It is one of the largest tourist attractions in Prague.

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