NEWS

Fisher: No charges in removal of signs

Robert Smith
Pawhuska Journal-Capital

District Attorney Mike Fisher said Friday morning, June 3, that there will not be a charge or charges brought in connection with the recent removal of political campaign signs from a business property in Barnsdall.

Fisher on May 27 posted video on his Facebook page of two persons removing from the car wash property along State Highway 11 in Barnsdall some signs belonging to County Commissioner Randall Jones. Fisher encouraged residents to provide information to his office about the incident.

”This is a crime and, as long as I am the district attorney, we will not tolerate this conduct,” Fisher said on his Facebook page.

The video showed what appeared to be two female figures running around a grassy area at the front of the car wash property and removing political campaign signs. It was evening, but the property was lighted and a camera made a recording.

Fisher said June 3 that an investigation revealed that two Broken Arrow residents who took the campaign signs had playful rather than malicious intentions. They wanted to give Commissioner Jones’s signs to a family member who has a friend named Randall Jones, Fisher explained. Barnsdall police sought assistance with the investigation from the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation, Fisher said. He expressed gratitude to law enforcement officers for their efforts and to the general public for its cooperation.

Fisher said the investigation yielded results June 2. He said there had initially been false leads in the case.

“We don’t ever want to file charges against someone who didn’t do anything,” he said.

Jones said June 3 that the attention Fisher gave to the problem of campaign sign theft had a positive effect.

”It slowed down on some of the sign stealing,” Jones said. “It has slowed down some because of the publicity and exposure.”

Jones said that campaign sign theft remains a concern. He said that he and his campaign have been receiving reports about a gray truck being connected to thefts.

Jones is the incumbent District 1 representative on the Osage County Board of County Commissioners. He is one of four candidates in the June 28 Republican Party Primary. Other District 1 Commissioner candidates in the Republican Primary are John Brazee, Clay Hughs and Everett Piper.