City Attorney News

A sign reminding the public of the ban on spray paint sales to minors is available on the city web site for store owners to print and post.

Owners are required to post such a sign “in a conspicuous place” under an amendment to the city graffiti ordinance that the Winston-Salem City Council passed July 19.
Section 5 of City Ordinance 38 – 15.1 states: “No person shall sell or otherwise transfer any spray paint to a minor unless the minor is accompanied by a parent or legal guardian at the time of purchase or transfer…. Any person or corporation holding a retail business license which permits the sale of spray paint shall have posted in a conspicuous place a sign which clearly states that: ‘It is unlawful to sell spray paint to any person under the age of eighteen (18) years unless the person is accompanied by a parent or legal guardian at the time of purchase or transfer.’ ”

The amendment also prohibits minors from possessing spray paint “while in or upon: any public facility, park, playground, swimming pool, recreational facility, or other public building or structure owned or operated by the city; or while in or within fifty (50) feet of an underpass, bridge abutment, culvert, or similar types of infrastructure, under circumstances manifesting the intent to violate any provision of this section, unless otherwise authorized by the city.

“Circumstances manifesting the intent of a minor to violate this section include, but are not limited to:

  1. 1. The possession, in plain view, of spray paint by a minor in one or more of the
    designated public places; or
  2. 2. A positive identification of a minor by a witness to the application of spray
    paint upon a prohibited surface in one or more of the aforementioned
    designated public places; or
  3. 3. Coverage of a minor’s hand(s) with spray paint while the minor is in one or
    more of the designated public places.”

Violations would be a misdemeanor and carry a fine of up to $500. The full text of the graffiti ordinance is posted online. 

Graffiti ordinance [pdf] 

Sign for posting about the sale of spray paint to minors [pdf] 


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