Cuyahoga County, OH. - It is the race for a Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court Judicial Seat. As General Election 2022 approaches, constituents see political yard signs all over Cuyahoga County. One day they are there; the next day, they are not. The disappearance of political signage is always a mystery, especially on private property.
Recently Cuyahoga County Judicial Candidate Tim Hess alerted a group of colleagues via text that his political signs were disappearing from private property. Hess also included a video of a vehicle circling outside a home during late night hours. The signage was gone when the homeowners went outside the following day. "In my opinion, my opponent and/or the Cuyahoga County Democrats must be worried. It gives me some gratification knowing that they are so worried that I may win that they might be out there removing my signs," stated Judicial Candidate Tim Hess. Candidate Hess said, "I would never resort to removing my opponent's signs from people's yards or anywhere else. That's just wrong and desperate."
The Ohio Revised Code Title 35 Elections Chapter 3517 discusses political signage and elections.
(6) No sign shall obscure or replace another sign. (e) Penalties for Unlawful Removal of Signs. – It is a Class 3 misdemeanor for a person to steal, deface, vandalize, or unlawfully remove a political sign that the (homeowner) placed lawfully.
Out of fairness, Brown on Cleveland contacted Judicial Candidate Rick Bell via email, Hess's opponent, to inquire about missing political signs. "It has come to our attention that your opponent Judicial Candidate Tim Hess's yard signs are missing from private property. Is your team responsible for Tim Hess's missing yard signs? What is your view on this issue? As a Judge, is this appropriate behavior for anyone?"
Judicial Candidate Rick Bell responded immediately. "Kimberly, thank you for emailing me. This matter is (absolutely) not occurring. I do not know of this happening and would never condone such behavior. I do not have a team or anyone doing this. Please check with the City to see if they are taking down yard signs. Bell signs have also disappeared. Very much appreciated, thank you," wrote Judicial Candidate Bell.
During election season, candidates complain about their political signs disappearing from private property. The homeowner does not know what happened to the signage. "Yard signs will disappear in the middle of the night. You go to bed with a yard sign in your front yard. The next morning, the sign is gone. Yes, people will steal signs at night. I call them creepy political crawlers. This tactic is very immature. I will tell you that just because you steal my sign does not mean I will change my vote. Anywho, welcome to the silly season on politics," laughed resident Gale Williams.
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