Councilman joe cimperman Protests Judge's Handling Of Graffiti Suspects

Submitted by Quest-News-Serv... on Mon, 04/13/2009 - 16:38.

Councilman Protests Judge's Handling Of Graffiti Suspects


POSTED: 1:43 pm EDT April 13, 2009
UPDATED: 2:21 pm EDT April 13, 2009


A Cleveland city councilman is seeing red over a judge's handling of two graffiti suspects, and on Monday he led a protest rally in hopes of sending the judge a message.


Joe Cimperman spearheaded the noon rally of community organizations. He said police finally caught the two people who have been trashing homes, businesses and neighborhoods with graffiti, painting on buildings and utility poles.


Two suspects were charged in the case, but Judge Eileen Gallagher dismissed charges against Mark Skapin, of Cleveland and gave the other suspect, Matthew Eastburn, of South Euclid, community service.


CImperman said that punishment is not good enough.


Eastburn was sentenced to clean graffiti as part of his 100 hours of community service.

 Click here: Pop Up Video of joe cimperman speaking


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Smart move

  This is a smart move on the part of Cimperman.  City residents are sick of suburban punks getting away with their childish antics and Joe knows it.  But, by now, we know that, for Joe, it's all for show, and the PD will go along with it.  Meanwhile, Cimperman's likely opponent, Brian Cummins, gets a backhanded slap in the PD today with his "how dare you dare the Diocese" for his landmarking of church interior/exteriors.  I hope that Brian wins this Jesuit Death Race 2010.  He has a big trump card in his pocket.  Get enough disgruntled suburban/urban Catholics to support his efforts to save inner city churches and he can take down the Judas move Cimperman made when he sold out on St. Andrews.   Remember folks, Cimperman could have landmarked St. Andrews, but he did not.  Meanwhile, Brian is going to have to get out from under his own sell-out mess...the NRP subsidized senior housing project, now slated to be in Cimperman's new ward.  How convenient.  Brian, remember, Kucinich will help you against Cimperman, because in NEO, grudges never die.  Unload NRP, now.

"Judge Eileen A. Gallagher Does Not Care About Cleveland"?

I'd like Cimperman to elaborate on the apparent title of the protest he just staged at the Justice Center: "Judge Eileen A. Gallagher Does Not Care About Cleveland".

Does he have proof? Is that really true? Does the PD support this position, as indicated by their prominent promotion of Cimperman's claim in their paper, despite there being nothing newsworthy about any aspect of this protest...

I can see reelection time coming... PD editors praising Cimperman rally and trashing judge over HEK.

What a miscarriage of justice, by our pandering newpaper ediors, and chief jester.

How many people was Cimperman able to rally for this rally... the photos indicate a half-dozen? Let's see the whole roll... show us the public outrage. There was none.

I suspect there were more important people at this rally to fight lead poisoning, at the same site, less than a year ago... which I don't recall was attended by Cimperman.

So a judge decides someone commited a minor crime rather than a major crime and Cleveland City Councilman Cimperman stages a smear campaign against the judge, with friends holding signs reading "Judge Eileen A. Gallagher Does Not Care About Cleveland"... denigrating a fine sculpture in the process (on cover of the Plain Dealer metro section of the print edition, there is a photo of the Segal sculpture in front of the Justice Center with a protest sign placed in the seated figure's lap...).

People here have indicated they don't think Cimperman is doing a good job as Councilman, but I don't recall anyone claiming "Councilman Cimperman Does Not Care About Cleveland" just because he used his political power to destroy Frank Giglio's house and life, for example.

People say "Councilman Cimperman Does Not Care About Frank Giglio"...

or "Councilman Cimperman Does Not Care About Lead Poisoning"...

or "Councilman Cimperman Does Not Care About The Poor".

We all assume he cares about "Cleveland"... his Cleveland, but still Cleveland. 

I assume Judge Gallagher cares about Cleveland as well.

Disrupt IT

My reason for going down to this event

Hello Norm, I went downtown to voice my opinion not because of Cimperman. But for these two knuckleheads. How can anyone prove they did all the Hek and Mak tags. Murals etc are a ok with me. But I can tell you almost every utility pole, Signal control box, mail box, and anything public had these two sysmbols on them.

You know I am on Giglio's side, but I think this needed to be exposed. I have had experiance with the Tremont Taggers from years back. They know I gave video to the police. Let them go tag thier own properties. or let the City give them a wall.

I am sure more of their buddies helped or even copycats crawled out from under rocks to tagg too. I spent days painting over this mess on Scranton Rd, and around West 14th and Lincoln Park with Matt Martin the ward 14 service provider. One of the only positive things Joe Santiago ever did was provide Stockyard the CDBG money to hire him and fill this position. But now it looks like he is getting laid off with many others from Stockyards. Thats ashamed, why could not Joe Santiago provided extra funding he had in reserve instead of giving it to impliment the bogus West 25th street plan.

Back to the knuckleheads we know what they look like now, we are going to give their mugshots to area residents. It will be hard to tag after being chased down the street by a mob of angry people with Louisville Sluggers in hand.

I counted about 40-50 people. About 25 if you take the CDC folks out of the mix.


How was graffiti rally publicized?

Hello Henry, how did you find out there was a event scheduled?& >At least the two defense attorney's were at the rally (to their credit).

Did Mr. Cimperman attend the trial and hear the evidence? 

Thanks, jeffb

I believe it was from Emails

Hi Jeff, I think Cimperman asked the local CDC's involved to get residents involved. I cannot speak for what happened at the trial, I do not know if Cimperman testified or not. I know Bob Shores at OCNW tracked most of the Tagging in the Ohio City area with pictures. I know emails were going around on the weekend.

Any PUBLIC notice of Cimperman's Graffiti rally?

Does anyone know if the graffiti rally organized by Mr. Cimperman was broadly announced anywhere?  Was it announced on on a Blog anywhere? On the TV news? In the DDealer?  

How did the two defense attorney's hear about the  rally?

Were the announcements all "private" email announcements to select persons/organizations (e.g. CDCs)  who Mr. Cimperman would believe to be sympathetic to his position?

Knowing the means of announcement is important in determining whether or not this was a staged, hypocritical use of the media or whether it was honest.   


elements of a crime

i was wondering about this, did they prove each element of the felony they charged?

i mean regardless of our feelings, i would be more upset by a judge allowing prosecution based on emotion. if their actions did not amount to a felony crime it would be inappropriate for Gallagher to make a finding of guilt just because she was really pissed off by what they did.

i think we need to be careful of charging a felony - its a pretty serious level of crime - lets not blur the lines.

anyone have information on this?

Cimperman is running for

Cimperman is running for office. He probably doesn't even know which office at this point. He's always running for office.

He's a politician.

However, his complaint is legit.

I don't understand the kind of defense I read here in RealNEO for this kind of misuse of

free expression. Especially when the perpetrators go into low income areas already hit

by every kind of destructive force and add their bit.

Roldo, I don't condone


I don't condone painting on someones house or garage.   But I also don't condone the Goodyear Blimp. The first is a violation of someone's private property, and the second is a violation of public trust property. 

Shepard Fairy is trying to navigate and illuminate a path through this issue. 

The discussion here on Realneo is an attempt - by several of us - to illustrate that the general public is willing to abandon a very legitimate claim to  public trust property of theirs, while having a total nit fit about their garage - which in my mind is a much less significant issue. 

And then there is the discussion of graffiti on highway infrastructure, public property,  and the like...and the quality and message of the graffiti. 

If the message was an urgent political message, is that ok?   Is it ok in a revolution? or only in a Revolution?

best, jeffb

No defending taggers

Roldo, I don't defend taggers.  Henry, doesn't defend taggers.  Others at REALNEO do.  I have no idea, why they do.

As a politician, Cimperman has his strengths.  He knows his constituents and he communicates with them.  I don't abide his
closed door deals with the "business" community, and the Diocese,  and his cheerleading on behalf of developers like Wolstein, but he can rally folks to an important civil cause.  And, I am also fed up by politicians that milk a megaphone for their own advancement...Cimperman is one of those politicians. I shouldn't mix my p's and q's here, but he can't continue to play both sides of the aisle and hold his head in this community.  He can't pretend to love us and screw us over at the same time with the kind of behavior he exhibited towards Frank Giglio.

Today, I will applaud Cimperman for defending the rights of citizens in this community and I hope it was not just another political photo-op for him.  We have to live with the damages wrought by these "kids."  Do I feel less for them, because they are confused, bored, directionless kids from the suburbs or nearby?  No.  These kids need guidance.  They are destructive and angry and they are easily attracted to the underworld of crime.  That crime starts with tagging, which leads to drug dealing, which leads to guns and leads to death.


Before you damn taggers...


Have you been under the bridge off W25th and seen the cool public art?

If you haven't had that field trip, coffee's on me and we'll go check it out.

Cuz I think that it is better than the CMFA!

But I have plebiean tastes.

best jeffb


  Jeff B--we have mutual respect.  I would rather not get into tagging versus graffiti art, here.  It's not worth fighting over this issue right now.  Peace out :)

ok, my turn...

 i'm not defending tagging - don't really like it really. what i'm saying is maybe they were overzealous in their prosecution. maybe they should have gone for multiple misdemeanors? i don't know, there wasn't much mention of this in the press.

if its not a felony to tag, then it doesn't make sense to scream at the judge for finding them not guilty of a felony. 

it makes sense to look at the legislature. you can't legislate from the bench (separation of powers and all that).

Not a felony

  Yes-Debra... you are right.  Mea culpa.  There is a need to rewrite the legislation.  Cimperman should be working on it.  And..I am walking away from this computer.

lucky you...

 i'm stuck here in this hot lab bored out of my fricking mind waiting for images to scan.....