Graffiti vandal defaces iconic sign atop historic Whittier near downtown Detroit in daylight

Via Cafe d'Mongo's Speakeasy
Via Cafe d’Mongo’s Speakeasy’s Facebook page.

A prolific graffiti writer known in Detroit as “edub” was captured on camera today defacing the iconic Whittier sign perched atop the historic Italian Renaissance high-rise along the Detroit River.

The photo was posted on the Facebook page of Cafe d’Mongo’s Speakeasy, with the message: “Taggers… stay away from our City! Larry and friends are on their way.”

WhittierThe tagger was spotted about 4:30 p.m.

The 15-story Whittier once served as a luxury hotel and apartment building overlooking the river and hosted The Beatles, the Rolling Stones, actress Mae West and playboy Horace Dodge Jr., among many others. But it has fallen into disrepair after becoming abandoned and neglected by Phoenix Communities, which owes more than $36,000 in delinquent property taxes on the building since 2011, according to county records.

The company has halted a 10-year-old plan to convert the Whittier into a $66 million development of 80 apartments and condos, and the owners have done little to keep out vandals and metal scavengers.

We’ll keep you updated on any developments with the tagger, whose graffiti is spread throughout Detroit on buildings, stop signs and bridges.

Click here: More photos and information on the historic Whittier.

Steve Neavling

Steve Neavling lives and works in Detroit as an investigative journalist. His stories have uncovered corruption, led to arrests and reforms and prompted FBI investigations.

  • Bro

    Great one Steve, you just played right into their hands. They love the attention you give them. In fact, why don’t you write another graff article and call out the taggers and post pics of their work.

  • iME

    I love the graffiti. Seems like these people are using worn down buildings to publish their art for free. Creative anarchy in my opinion. Some sort of passion that people could learn from.

    • Dust Buster

      i would think if they used their passion to clean up, help or even form a guardian angels style group….that would be a much more productive use of their anarchistic passion. some of it is art and i would rather see a mural on one of the many walls that look like beirut. but, some guy risking his life climbing up some place dangerous just to put some crappy initials doesnt cut it.

      say he falls or breaks one of those supports away on that old sign. not only hurt or kill himself or maybe cause a chunk of metal to fall to the sidewalk. if it hit one of your family members and you found out it was because some guy with identity issues decided to spray some crappy initials or logo… i dont think you would be such a vigorous supporter of “the art”

      so when he falls and goes splat can we assume that i can spray a chalk line around his body and initial it as long as i call it art?

      shall we explore the art aspect? i would say that sign was aged and has a dated yet wonderful patina to it. it was fine in its own way. some d-bag putting his initials on it ruined it. the selfishness of some of the artiste’s is typical of the new self absorbed generation. they feel its detroit, nobody cares and i dont care who owns it and my spray can will make it better.

  • L Jerome Dmongo

    The Police have the evidence let us see what happen

    • Doe

      Nothing will happen. The “police” had evidence when my friend was shot in the head and the killer is still on the loose. That sign clearly needs to be painted anyways so I don’t think that it really matters. E-Dub will be just fine. I know him personally. He isn’t going to get caught. HAHAHA

    • Tam J Madlee

      I doubt anything will happen but more taggers going there to tag. Detoit has become a graffiti shit hole.

      • rexer_ferox

        You Mean Graffiti Paradise.

        • Tam J Madlee

          You are joking right 90% crap 5% okay 5% art/worth looking at. I’d rather see turtle turtle than 90% of this pure prolly don’t even know who that is!

          • rexer_ferox

            I Dont Know Who Turtle Is? Ha, Okay. Im Guessing That You Don’t Know Who He Because Its Not Turtle Turtle, Its Just Turtle. if You Can’t Appreciate All The Handstyles And Throwups, And Only Care About Pieces, Then Your View Doesn’t Matter.

          • Tam J Madlee

            One day you might grow up.

          • rexer_ferox

            Was Thinking The Same Thing About You.

          • Tam J Madlee

            Just for that I am going to tag my name 100 times all over the city with some mad, crazy dope styles, to show how dope my style is!

          • rexer_ferox

            Wow, what a grown up response.

          • Tam J Madlee

            It is called sarcasm.