A vandal defaced the Washington Monument with red paint and obscene messages Tuesday night before being arrested.

Shaun Ray Deaton, 44, was taken into custody around 7:30 p.m. Tuesday on charges of trespassing, tampering, and vandalism, the U.S. Park Police announced Wednesday.

Splattered across the base of the monument was a note in red paint: “Have you been f–ked by this? Gov says tough s–t.”

The suspect poured a bucket of red paint on the monument, leaving a large streak about 8 feet tall, along with an apparent anti-government message on the monument, according to images shared by Fox. An individual was taken into custody and is facing charges for the incident, according to Fox.

“Nightly monument report. Someone has painted the side with red paint,” FOX 5 DC’s Katie Barlow said. “There is an individual in cuffs off to the side and police have blocked the area out to the grass.”

Barlow followed her first tweet with a brief video showing that someone had been detained by law enforcement.

“This is why we can’t have nice things. Some freedom loathing scumbag has defaced the Washington Monument with paint and vulgarities,” WUSA9 anchor and reporter Adam Longo added.

FOX 5 DC’s Allison Papson gave an update:

“The USPP has an adult male in custody for vandalizing the base of the Washington Monument with paint. The area at the base of the monument will be temporality closed. National Park Service conservators will work on the restoration process. The investigation is ongoing.” 

The National Park Service said it could take two to three weeks and multiple treatments to completely remove the paint.

“Our expert team is aware of the issue and will get to work first thing in the morning,” the NPS tweeted late Tuesday.

It’s unclear how visitation to the monument will be affected by the cleanup.

The Washington Monument, which sits on the National Mall in Washington, was built in 1848 to honor President George Washington.

Sources: DailyWire, Fox5DC

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