Texas Graffiti Writer Gets 8 Years of Prison Without Parole

12.16.09 Will Sherman


Another Texas teenager is being inordinately punished for graffiti. 18-year-old Sebastian Perez was sentenced to 8 years in state prison after pleading guilty to three vandalism charges and one for pot possession.

Unlike fellow writer Ralph Mirabel, who was given eight years by another Corpus Christi judge in August, Perez must serve his entire sentence with no possibility of parole. Despite the defendant’s probation plea and promise “to finish high school, help clean up graffiti and find a job,” State District Judge Marisela Saldaña doled out an emotional lecture and the maximum possible sentence for what amounted to roughly $7,300 in damage, according to the Corpus Christi Caller-Times. But that’s small change compared to the more than $140,000 Texas taxpayers will shell out to keep Perez locked up so long.

Update: Judge Saldaña is forced to reduce the 8-year sentence