Updated: Apr 15, 2020
By: Michael Morehead, Editor-In-Chief Posted: February 29, 2020 | 06:49PM EST
Buckhannon - Numerous complaints have emerged in recent weeks regarding political yard signs being vandalized or removed from residential property.
In case you weren't aware, stealing yard signs is actually a criminal offense. It could land you in jail and result in hefty fines.
To all of you perpetrators out there:
If viewing yard signs causes you to overreact and commit criminal acts, perhaps jail time and fines would be a lesson well learned. We do not condone your vigilantism nor do we wish you the best Karma. Regardless your political, religious or ethical viewpoints, it's never okay to steal, not even a yard sign.
Here's some advice: If you don't like who's name or mug graces that particular piece of vinyl, simply take the high road in lieu of the low. Trust me... It's more rewarding and takes a lot less energy to simply look the other way (or laugh out loud hysterically, your choice).
Unfortunately, this pettiness will more than likely continue throughout the coming weeks. So today, I'm here to give the good guys a few ideas to deter these petty yard sign stealers (PYSS).
These helpful tips were provided by some of our neighborhood's finest and upstanding citizens:
(Editor's Note: Some names have been changed to protect Contributor identity and their chosen methods for deterring yard sign theft.)
Joe Smith - "What would be the best thing to deter these thieves? Go to Dollar Tree and buy you some cheap petroleum jelly. Then just slather your yard signs and attach a note with a smiley face telling them that they're being watched on night vision cameras".
Arnold Jacbos "To that guy who stole my signs last night, next time you come in my yard to steal my 1st Amendment rights, I'm gonna teach you about the 2nd Amendment, fair enough?"
Jane Doe - "When I lived in Lewis County, signs were being stolen in record numbers. Candidates have to spend their hard earned money on these signs so I'm glad that laws are against it. Some local residents began putting oil or greasy material on the post or around edges. It's been working great so far. My neighbor, Tim uses wet paint! No joke! Every night before bedtime, he's out there applying it. Now that's what I call dedication right there!"
Amber Trexler - "I don't have signs, but if I did, I'd place them just outside of my front facing window," she suggested. That way you could see if anyone approaches while watching television or eating snacks. Our camera sends us a text alert on the cell phone when it sees something we don't. Who knew technology could be such an advantage this day and age?"
Edward Brown - "It may sound gross, but seriously, slather dog poo on strategic parts of the sign around the stakes. When they grab the sign to yank it out, they get poo. I sprinkle a little water over it occasionally to keep it moist. I also read somewhere that several folks use hot sauce, so when the perpetrator rubs their eyes after the fact... I don't know... I think poo works best."
Pseudonym Person - "I electrify my political signs, that'll teach 'em... Just have to got (sic) the ones that have those metal legs. Don't crank the voltage to the point of causing any casualties, though. That's never good. A stupid sign isn't worth someone's life"
No matter how you to choose to protect your yard signs from vandalism or theft, we should all unite to affect change in our community, regardless of our beliefs or affiliations. ALL sides have a story to tell... ALL sides should be heard.
So, let's proudly display our yard signs with confidence and allow ALL of our voices to be heard, shall we? This type of petty interference in our local elections should outrage ALL of us.
Remember, stealing yard signs is punishable by imprisonment and hefty fines. If you suspect or witness any suspicious behavior or wrong-doing, please contact local or regional law enforcement at:
Buckhannon City Police -
Upshur County Sheriff -
Upshur State Police Office -
In case of an actual emergency -
Please dial 911
May the best candidates win!