A woman was banned from all national parks and federally administered land – more than a fifth of the United States – after defacing rock formations with graffiti and posting evidence of her crimes to social media.
Casey Nocket, 23, was also sentenced to 200 hours of community service and will pay a monetary fine to be determined at a hearing in December.
The San Diego woman documented her art on rock features on social media as she traveled across the US.
Over a 26-day period in 2014 she damaged formations at seven national parks by drawing or painting on them with acrylic paint and markers, signing her works with her social media handle ‘Creepytings.’
‘The defendant’s defacement of multiple rock formations showed a lack of respect for the law and our shared national treasures,’ said acting U.S. Atty. Phillip A. Talbert, according to the Los Angeles Times.
‘The National Park Service has worked hard to restore the rock formations to their natural state, completing clean-up efforts in five of the seven national parks.’
‘They expect to complete clean-up efforts at Death Valley and at Crater Lake national parks as weather permits.’
Among the parks she targeted were Death Valley and Yosemite National Parks in California, Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado, Zion National Park in Utah and Crater Lake National Park in Oregon.
But after proudly posting her work on Instagram, she provoked outrage on social media and was later arrested.
Some of the vandalism proved difficult to remove as sandblasting and chemical stripping techniques used to remove paint can cause irreplaceable damage to natural features.
And at two parks, Crater Lake and Death Valley, the graffiti is yet to be fully removed nearly two years later.
Yesterday she appeared at a federal court in Fresno, California where she pleaded guilty to seven counts of defacing national parks.
Prosecutor Phillip Talbert said in a statement: ‘The defendant’s defacement of multiple rock formations showed a lack of respect for the law and our shared national treasures.
‘The National Park Service has worked hard to restore the rock formations to their natural state, completing clean-up efforts in five of the seven parks.’
Authorities said there would be court hearing at a later date to determine the amount of money Nocket will be required to pay in restitution.
Her Instagram account has since been deleted following an outcry, but not before various media outlets got hold of it, publishing exchanges in which she shamelessly defended her work.
In one post from the time, she wrote: ‘It’s art, not vandalism. I am an artist.’
The case also prompted a White House petition demanding she be prosecuted with more than 10,000 people signing the document.
After Nocket admitted causing damage in the national parks, Charles Cuvelier, chief of law enforcement for the National Park Service said: ‘This case illustrates the important role that the public can play in identifying and sharing evidence of illegal behavior in parks.
‘It is clear that the public cares deeply for the special places that the National Park Service represents, and the resolution of this case sends a message to those who would consider such inappropriate behavior going forward.
This article originally appeared on the Daily Mail.