Political signs the target of theft, vandalism in Chico

One man even caught a thief taking his "recall" sign on camera.

Posted: Jul 31, 2019 3:18 PM
Updated: Jul 31, 2019 6:21 PM

CHICO, Calif. - "I'm a combat veteran who served in Iraq. We've had thousands of people serve our country and die for the right to express ourselves. And then you take another person's right away? It's not acceptable," said Tim Lynch.

Lynch is passionate about his country. He fought to protect it. And now, he's getting involved on the local level for the first time, by placing a "Recall Stone & Ory" poster in his front yard.

"It really doesn't matter what the cause is, it's my right and responsibility to express my support for things I support in my community," Lynch said.

But someone else in the community disagrees. The signs keep disappearing.

"The first time I didn't have cameras set up yet but about 24 hours after I set it up, it was gone. The second time.. I had cameras installed and got a picture of the culprit," Lynch said.

Though the signs cost very little, Lynch reported the theft to the police.

"I fully intend to press charges if this person is identified, it's not just my property that was stolen, it's my political speech, especially in this day and age when tensions are rising on both sides and there is a lack of respect for one another," Lynch said.

Across town, another person had a similar experience.

What Cheri Smith-Comfort returned home to last week shook her to her core.

"I saw a bright yellow thing in the road and realized it was my Karl Ory sign... the planter here where the sign was, was completely ripped up," Smith-Comfort said.

Someone ripped her flowers out of the pots and destroyed her campaign signs.

"The other light was smashed on the ground in front of it," Smith-Comfort said.

She says she is heartbroken, but not surprised.

"It's something I put work into and spent money on, but it also shows how sad society is right now that we have to do this to each other, we should be working together to fix the problems, not destroying each others' signs," Smith-Comfort said.

Smith-comfort told Action News Now she is not going to press charges. Her hope is that people will just learn to have respect for one another.

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