A “graffiti tagger” fell 24 feet from a catwalk above 826, then was run over by a truck and killed, while he was trying to tag a highway sign.
A man spray painting a sign on the 826 Expressway was killed early Friday morning after he fell 24-feet from the catwalk and was then struck by a truck.
Friends of his family read a statement persuading others against painting traffic signs. Allison Balladares read a statement on behalf of Olivera’s mother, older sister and other loved ones.
“At this time our family is in shock. We do not condone this sort of activity. We are speaking out to prevent others from doing the same thing.” She added, “This is an isolated incident. It was out of character for him. He was a good person, a good friend to others. He was always there for others during his life.”
It’s a sentiment felt among other young artists. “They shouldn’t do this,” Jonathan Rodriguez told CBS4 Reporter Peter D’Oench. “This is a dangerous thing. People have brothers, sisters, kids. It’s horrible.”
Twenty-eight-year-old Enrique Vicente Olivera of Kendall fell onto the southbound lanes of the Palmetto, near Bird Road before the driver of a Ford Ranger pickup truck hit him after midnight, police said. The driver of that truck did stop.
FHP officials say it’s believed the “tagger” may have taken a step back to admire the beginnings of his work when he fell from the catwalk and was run over.
“We have reports that the victim may have been up on the catwalk. We did find a spray can next to the victim. He may have been up there tagging the sign,” said FHP’s Francisco Lozano.
FHP Lt. Pat Santangelo told CBS4, “I think over the past week, we’ve had a problem with people defacing signs on roadways.” He added, “There are reasons why you shouldn’t do that; one of the main reasons you shouldn’t do that happened today.”
Earlier in the week, several signs on I-95 in downtown Miami and North Miami were tagged by graffiti artists and authorities had to spend the following days cleaning up the mess.
Police are not sure if the incidents are related.