Friday, November 21, 2008

Democrat Caught Stealing Signs

Campaign sign thefts denied by former Oklahoma state lawmaker
Published: November 21, 2008

A former Democratic state lawmaker denies allegations he took down campaign signs of the Republican candidate seeking to replace him.

"If you want to give me a polygraph, I will take a polygraph,” said Al Lindley, whose term as a state representative from House District 93 ended Tuesday.

Jay Means said he saw Lindley take down campaign signs favoring Rep. Mike Christian, R-Oklahoma City, in south Oklahoma City about 90 minutes before voters went to the polls on Election Day.

"I confronted him right then,” Means said.

"He didn’t have a response, and I told him that I would be turning it over to the police.”

The two aren’t on the best of terms, with Means, a Republican, unsuccessfully opposing Lindley four years ago for the House District 93 seat.

Christian, who won this month’s three-way House District 93 election, declined comment.

Lindley, who could not seek re-election because of 12-year legislative term limits, said he never tampered with any of his opponents’ signs during his campaigns. He said he and a friend drove around the morning of Election Day to put up signs for the district’s Democratic candidate, David Castillo.

"We were putting signs up, we never touched anybody’s signs,” Lindley said.

Means, who is an assistant principal at U.S. Grant High School, said he was driving by various polling places about 5:30 a.m. Nov. 4 before going to work so he could look out for possible Democratic Party shenanigans.

"We’ve had problems with the opposition party taking our signs,” he said.

He said he drove up and saw Lindley’s car, which had an HD 93 tag on it. Lindley was putting up signs for Castillo, and then picked up some Christian campaign signs near Harvey Avenue and SW 21, Means said.

An Oklahoma City police report states Means flagged down an officer shortly before 6 a.m. at SW 25 and Robinson Avenue and reported the theft of campaign signs.

The officer reported he patrolled the area, but didn’t find a car that matched the description.

Oklahoma City police Sgt. Paco Balderrama said stealing campaign signs is a misdemeanor. For the investigation to continue, Means will be asked to sign a complaint because a police officer didn’t see the alleged incident.

"It’s basically his word against the suspect’s,” Balderrama said.

"In politics, without any further proof — not that we don’t believe him — but how easy would it be for one person to make allegations against another?”

No comments: