- Associated Press - Monday, June 1, 2015

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - A new crime and a more serious penalty for repeated spray painting or defacing of public and private buildings and tombstones in North Carolina are heading to Gov. Pat McCrory’s desk.

The House gave final legislative approval Monday night to a bill amended by the Senate that creates a count called “graffiti vandalism.”

Someone convicted of the crime would be guilty of the second most severe form of misdemeanor, face a minimum $500 fine and possibly 24 hours of community service. The crime would be upgraded to a felony on a third conviction if each of the first two convictions occurred on previous, separate occasions.

Asheville-area lawmakers have pressed for the statewide changes at the request of local prosecutors seeking more deterrents to graffiti.

The House’s final vote was 98-11.

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