HOPKINTON — An Ashaway man is facing additional charges after police said graffiti in Westerly connected him to similar vandalism near his home.
Hopkinton police on Friday arrested 19-year-old Jason D. Connell, of 355 Woodville Road, Apt. C., on two counts of vandalism through malicious damage to property. He was released on a promise to appear in court next month on both the Hopkinton and Westerly charges.
He was arrested Dec. 14 by the Westerly police, a day after they discovered graffiti while investigating separate instances of damage near the Amtrak pedestrian tunnel in downtown Westerly.
Westerly Police Chief Shawn Lacey said that Community Officer Howard Mills matched the tunnel markings to a handwriting sample obtained from the Westerly Education Center in 2017. The center had reported damage to a desk.
Hopkinton Police Capt. Mark Carrier said Connell had also defaced a guardrail installed on a state road near his home. That damage was also traced to Connell using a handwriting sample, he said.
Police said the same tagger name JSK, or "Jay Slick Kid," a nickname used by Connell, were used in both towns.
Carrier praised the effort by Westerly police last week, saying their diligence helped lead to resolution of several cases.
"This type of case shows the importance of keeping an open line of communication," he said. "I've preached to my guys for years that it is important to keep an open line of communication. This is a perfect example; in this case, there was damage we weren't even aware of yet and we already have conclusion."