City might force destruction of mural featuring Kobe, Snoop, 2Pac

The City of Bellflower’s Code Enforcement Division has reportedly flagged the mural for multiple violations including the direction it faces.

A southeast Los Angeles County mural honoring local legends such as Kobe Bryant, Snoop Dogg and 2Pac may soon be removed by the city due to municipal code violations.

The 54-foot-by-10-foot piece by muralist Louie “Sloe” Palsino, commissioned in February by the owners of Speedy Auto Tint in Bellflower, has reportedly been flagged by the city’s Code Enforcement Division for multiple violations including the direction it faces, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Per city ordinance, all painted murals in the city of Bellflower must face a side street. The mural spanning a side of Speedy Auto Tint reportedly does not.

(KTLA YouTube Screenshot)
(KTLA YouTube Screenshot)

Per the report from KTLA, co-owners Robert and Renae Cornejo also did not obtain a permit for the artwork and were given a notice from the city. They explained to the outlet that because the mural was commissioned on their private property, they did not think a permit was needed.

“I was heartbroken to receive the notice because I felt like everyone involved poured their soul into the project,” Robert told the Times.“We first did this to promote and expand the business, yes, but after the mural was completed, it was a beautiful tribute to L.A. culture.”

Since completion, the mural has become a beloved feature of the city in the eyes of many local residents, including Jeana Jennings of Riverside.

“Today’s climate bothers me, so any bit of beauty is a good thing,” Jennings told KTLA. “Keep it, it’s worth it.”

The artwork has even garnered celebrity attention, including a message of support from actor Danny Trejo, who is featured in the mural. He told his Twitter followers to go see it before it disappears.

According to city officials, however, not all residents of Bellflower are in support of the mural. The artwork has reportedly been the subject of complaints sent to the mayor’s office, KTLA reported.

“[The mural] does not comply with the established mural standards in the Municipal Code, and we have received complaints about that fact,” reads a statement from the office of Bellflower Mayor Sonny R. Santa Ines, which said it does not object to the mural’s content. “Our staff is engaged with the owner of the business and we are actively seeking an appropriate solution.”

Speedy Auto Tint co-owner Renae Cornell told the outlet she is hoping to continue receiving signatures on the petition she and Robert launched, which has over 6,400 signatures as of Saturday afternoon.

“We really wanted something to kind of bring the community together, kind of make Bellflower proud,” Renae told the outlet. “I’m hoping (the petition) will show the city, if we get enough people, that, hey, people love this, come on, you can’t make us tear it down.”

Robert told the Times that they are “trying to find a way to work with the city” to save the mural, including filing an appeal and requesting an official court hearing on the matter.

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