The Hollywood sign on Monday afternoon briefly read "HOLLYBOOB," and six people were arrested over the incident. The group, which had to climb steep terrain to get to the sign, said they were trying to raise awareness for breast cancer. Police say they threw a tarp with the letter "B" over the "W," and a white dash was used to turn the "D" into a "B." Los Angeles Police Department security personnel saw the five men and one woman on video surveillance, and a responding police helicopter then observed the group leaving the area. LAPD officers and Griffith Park rangers met them on Mulholland Drive and arrested them, the Los Angeles Times reports. They will be cited with misdemeanor trespassing, but no vandalism, since the sign wasn't damaged.
"It’s unfortunate that such an important icon for the city of LA is not being appreciated," said the chairman of the Hollywood Sign Trust, which maintains the site. "This is an icon that’s there for visual reinforcement of the importance of Hollywood, not just for the city of LA but to the world,” he said. “It needs to be upheld, it doesn’t need to be demeaned." LAPD Captain Steve Lurie called the incident "way uncool" and also dangerous. TMZ, which has photos of the altered sign, reports that a model named Julia Rose was allegedly involved. "February is National Cancer Prevention Month," the gossip site notes, "so like we said ... it's a crime, but also a good reminder to get checked out regularly." (Read more Hollywood sign stories.)