Police seized Adam Nilsson’s iPhone, iPad and iPod, spray paint, stencils and several other items when they served a search warrant at the Baker City councilor’s home on Aug. 9, eight days after he was cited for criminal trespassing while in possession of a firearm, and second-degree criminal mischief at an abandoned lime plant near Huntington.
Both are misdemeanor charges.
Nilsson, 46, who was appointed to fill a vacancy on the City Council on Feb. 14, 2017, filed a complaint with Baker County Sheriff Travis Ash, contending that Sheriff’s Deputy Gabe Maldonado acted unprofessionally during the incident the night of Aug. 1.
Ash said he assigned an officer to investigate Nilsson’s complaint.
In response to an email from the Herald on Thursday seeking a comment, Nilsson wrote: “Under the advice of counsel, I have no comment at this time.”
Nilsson has attended the past two City Council meetings, on Aug. 8 and 22. Councilors did not discuss his legal situation at either meeting.
In the affidavit supporting the application for a search warrant of Nilsson’s home at 307 Hillcrest Drive along with his pickup truck and motorcycle, Deputy Rich Kirby of the Sheriff’s Office wrote that he and other officers, including Baker City Police officer Shannon Regan, had seen photographs of “stencil type graffiti” on Nilsson’s social media accounts.
Kirby also wrote in his affidavit that a photograph from a Flickr account showed Nilsson wearing a white T-shirt with the word “Provolutus” printed on the front.
Kirby wrote that Regan emailed him the link to that photograph.
When Sheriff’s Office Lt. Jef Van Arsdall searched Nilsson’s home, he seized two black T-shirts with “Provolotus” printed on them.
Van Arsdall also found a cardboard stencil of the word “Provolotus” in a toolbox on the patio at Nilsson’s home.
Kirby wrote in his affidavit that Regan told him she had seen “Provolotus” in graffiti reported recently in Baker City, and that the Instagram account name for Nilsson’s page is “Provolotus.”
Regan also told Kirby that Nilsson has a tattoo on his arm with the letters “Provo.”
Nilsson, who is an artist and also serves on the Baker City Public Arts Commission, told the Herald in early August that he went to the former town site of Lime, which is just north of Interstate 84 about four miles northwest of Huntington, on Aug. 1 to show Ashley E. Schroder, 30, of Portland, whom he described as his friend and artistic collaborator, the graffiti that has been painted on abandoned buildings there.
Nilsson said he was unsure of whether he and Schroder were trespassing.
He admitted applying a shiny silver paint over other paint on one of the “crumbling buildings” at the site to test the color.
“The last thing I thought was that painting on paint on a crumbling building would be destroying someone’s property,” Nilsson told the Herald.
See more in the Aug. 25, 2017, issue of Baker City Herald.