Vandalized political signs on the rise in NWA

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KNWA/FOX 24 have heard multiple incidents of people in our area having their political signs vandalized, moved, and stolen.

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FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — More campaign signs are being vandalized in Northwest Arkansas, and political experts don’t see it letting up anytime soon.

People are failing to realize that trampling on other people’s rights is trampling on your own rights.

DARIN BOLES, FAYETTEVILLE RESIDENT

KNWA/FOX 24 have heard multiple incidents of people in our area having their political signs vandalized, moved, and stolen.

One of those people is Darin Boles.

“About a month ago, one of our signs was taken and placed in our trashcan,” he said. “My wife put it back up and a couple of days later it was just gone.”

Boles said in the more than 30 years he’s lived in Fayetteville, he’s never seen people in his neighborhood go to such great lengths to keep their signs seen and safe.

“There’s a sign down the street from me that is now on their roof,” he said.

University of Arkansas Political Science Professor Andrew Dowdle said this is just the tip of the iceberg, especially since more people are now voting less because they support a party and more because they dislike the other.

“Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like in the short-run things are going to get much better,” he said.

With more people voting with that mindset, comes a rise in what Dowdle calls “sign wars” — where people are now expressing their views more openly.

“Especially the fact that now you end up seeing kind of a cluster of signs, where you end up having not only local signs but national signs together,” Dowdle said.

COURTESY OF DARIN BOLES

MORE SIGNS COULD MEAN MORE FINES.

According to Sgt. Tony Murphy with the Fayetteville Police Department, if you are caught messing with someone’s sign it could mean a Class A misdemeanor or a felony depending on the amount of damage done.

“We have opposing views, but we’re all in this together,” Sgt. Murphy said. “We don’t need to be vandalizing each other’s properties.”

It’s not just illegal, it’s immoral.

DARIN BOLES, FAYETTEVILLE RESIDENT

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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