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Two arrested after new Cole Park Pier was vandalized overnight

Pictures show red spray paint on three different sections of the new pier.

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — It did not take long for vandals to tag the brand new Cole Park Pier.

Red spray paint could be seen early Thursday morning on several different sections of the new pier.

Two people have been arrested for the vandalism, according to the Corpus Christi Police Department. Emanuel Ysaguirre and Ethan Flores, both 20, were arrested for "offenses of graffiti and possession of criminal instruments."

It was just after 2 a.m. when officials said they got a call from a fisherman about the two men spray painting benches, trash cans and light poles on the new pier.

Later Thursday morning, 3News spoke with Parks and Recreation Interim Director Dante Gonzalez about the incident.

"Obviously whenever something like this happens, it reduces the ability of the community to enjoy it because we have to either temporarily shut down while we address it and maintain it and clean it," Gonzalez said.

This is why we can't have nice things. The new Cole Park Pier has already been vandalized. (Photos edited to blur graffiti symbols.)

Posted by KIII 3 News on Thursday, December 23, 2021

Fishermen at the pier felt disheartened with the graffiti, considering it has only been open for a week.

"Yeah, it kind of gives it a black eye," fisherman Michael Sabala said. "Something that's not really nice to see."

"This is a brand new park and, you know, we just don't really agree with that, that's not good," Ricardo Quiroz said of the vandalism. "We spend all this money on these parks and they should be treated with respect, not graffiti all over. There's just no point in that."

Gonzalez asks that residents and visitors assist with the efforts to preserve the parks to prevent these incidents. The two men charged for vandalizing the park remain in the custody of CCPD and the graffiti has since been removed from the benches, trash cans and light poles.

"It's not just a problem with Parks and Recreation or just a problem within the parks. There's a lot of city property that does get vandalized," Gonzalez said. "Unfortunately, there's tagging that goes throughout the entire city."

The photos used in this article have been edited to smear the symbols and tags used. 

The new pier just opened on Friday, Dec. 17.

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