BEAVERCREEK — A Shetland Road resident is trying to figure out who vandalized a political sign in his yard and why.
Richard Benedict went to get his mail last Friday afternoon and discovered his Trump/Pence sign had been spray painted black on one side and had a vulgar word sprayed on the other, with that side of the sign moved so it faced the road. The sign was about 30 feet off the street, Benedict said, so whomever did it not only broke the law, but also violated Benedict’s personal space.
“They should just stay off your property,” he said. “I had these out here last (election). There was no problem. It’s a very nice neighborhood.”
Benedict said his experience tells him his neighborhood is mostly Republican. But there is a lot of vehicle traffic as the only way into his neighborhood is on Newton Drive off North Fairfield, which goes right by his home. Despite that, he thinks it was an area resident.
”Somebody living here is what I figured,” Benedict said. “Who drives around with a can of paint? People do a lot of walking around here in the evenings.”
Benedict said it was likely someone who saw the sign while walking and went home to get paint.
According to Beavercreek Police Capt. Chad Lindsey, possible charges could be criminal damaging (second-degree misdemeanor), criminal mischief (third-degree misdemeanor), and/or criminal trespass (fourth-degree misdemeanor). If there is some type of threat spray painted on the sign, that could add menacing (fourth-degree misdemeanor) or aggravated menacing (first-degree misdemeanor).
A first-degree misdemeanor carries a maximum fine of $1,000 and up to 180 days in jail. A second-degree misdemeanor has a maximum fine of $750 and 90 days in jail, while a third-degree misdemeanor carries a maximum of a $500 fine and up to 60 days in hail. A fourth-degree misdemeanor has a maximum sentence of $250 fine and 30 days in jail.