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Police to Political Sign Thieves: 'It's a Crime – It is Larceny'

Candidates are considering using video monitoring to identify those responsible for stealing "numerous" political yard signs around Oakland Township, police say.

The is asking Oakland Township residents for help identifying the individuals responsible for stealing "numerous" political yard signs from all over the township, Substation Commander Sgt. Tony Spencer said.

Spencer said there seems to be no rhyme or reason as to which signs are being taken, and that all candidates have been affected.

“They’re all missing – there’s no particular victim here,” he said.

But the disappearing signs aren't just a nuisance for the candidates and the residents who support them, Spencer said.

"It's a crime – it is larceny, and there is a monetary value involved in it."

Spencer also gave a warning to the sign thieves: “There might be trail cameras on these, so if you’re going to take them, be prepared, because we might have a picture of you.”

Spencer said several candidates are also considering utilizing video monitoring to help catch the responsible parties.

“This happens every four years when there’s an election," Spencer said. "These signs turn up missing, and it seems to be somebody who just doesn’t care for the clutter or look.”

Anyone with any information about the thefts is asked to contact OCSO Detective John Peters at 248-652-4886.

Brendan McGaughey July 19, 2012 at 09:14 PM
During the 2004 presidential election, a few of my more devious classmates used to steal the signs for sport and see who could gather the most. John Kerry signs were worth double points!
Marty Rosalik July 19, 2012 at 09:21 PM
You can make a complaint to the township code enforcement officer. You can also file complaints with the Michigan Secretary of State but it will be weeks after any election before any action is taken. Most everything printed is required to have the campaign committee information printed on it, who is responsible. The candidates themselves usually don't do the placement. The best thing to do is get the required information from the sign and use one of these two sites to look up the responsible people on the committee. School board, local, and township offices At Oakland County. http://courts.oakgov.com/cfrs/ State level http://www.michigan.gov/sos/0,1607,7-127-1633_8723_8751---,00.html The Statement of Organization should have names, addresses, and phone numbers. They need to talk to their supporters.
Marty Rosalik July 19, 2012 at 09:22 PM
Brendan, you can get in trouble for that. :)
uknowimright July 20, 2012 at 09:04 AM
So, in a troubled economy where the police can barely handle investigating serious crimes (oh, I don't know, how about all the larcenies-from-autos), you are actually suggesting we waste taxpayer dollars to catch a bunch of MINOR kids running around in the middle of the night, only to slap them on the wrist and hand the back to their parents? What are you people smoking??
Halotron July 23, 2012 at 01:54 PM
I think it's unfortunate if people are stealing signs for smaller races like school board or something, but if we're talking about presidential signs here it's not like people don't know who is running already. Stealing the signs is wrong, but I agree that the police are better serving working on more important crimes. It's not like they have unlimited resources.

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