With an election coming next year, campaign signs have already began to appear throughout the county, and the inevitable vandalism has already started.
Reports of damage to signs have come in from all over the county involving different candidates for different offices such as John Clem candidate for jailer, Daniel Howard candidate for jailer and Leslie “Smitty” Smith, candidate for sheriff.
According to Smith, several of his signs were damaged by vandals.
“Tuesday night at sometime between 9:30 p.m. and 10 p.m. someone called me at my home and told me that one of my signs that was located on private property on U.S. 119 near Keith appeared to be vandalized or taken,” said Smith. “The following morning when I got up I started receiving phone calls about my signs, I think about six of them, all 4x4 signs, had been vandalized, many of them on private property.”
Smith said someone had taken a knife or sharp instrument and cut the centers out of them.
“I would never even entertain the thoughts of bothering someone else’s property or their interest in trying to run a campaign,” said Smith. “It certainly is disheartening.”
Smith encouraged anybody who observes vandalism to report it to the police.
Pam Bailey, Clem’s cousin, said she reported the damage to Clem’s sign at her home in Rio Vista to law enforcement. Clem said he has experienced theft of his signs and vandalism to others across the county.
Smith pointed out the signs are an expensive investment for a campaign.
“You’re goal is just to get your name out there and let the people make a decision on who they want to represent them in these different offices,” said Smith.
Reach Joe P. Asher at 606-573-4510, ext. 113, firstname.lastname@example.org