This is bizarre: two photographers in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, have been charged by police with smashing the glass at 70 bus stops around the city — locations they had been photographing for a photo book.
Between February 18th and February 21st, 70 bus shelters in the city were vandalized by having their window panes shattered. On February 28th, they charged the 55-year-old Autera and the 38-year-old Zambrano each with 21 counts of “mischief under $5,000”, 2 counts of “mischief over $5,000,” and a weapons charge.
Police say the duo used marbles fired from a slingshot to destroy the glass. The damages are estimated to cost taxpayers $30,000.
Back in November 2015, the Edmonton Examiner reported that the duo was working on a photo project and book that documented Edmonton’s bus riders. In a manner similar to Humans of New York, they visited the bus stops for months and shot around 100 portraits of those waiting for buses to arrive.
Autera has reportedly visited over 100 countries and has held photo exhibitions in dozens of them.
The people seemed “quite sad,” Autera told the Examiner. “People don’t smile enough. Why?”
Police have not given any motive behind the alleged vandalism spree — was it related to the project? — but we’re guessing it didn’t help any bus passengers smile more.