MADERA COUNTY – District Attorney Michael Keitz has issued a statement after learning about what he says is a series of acts of vandalism to his campaign signs in the mountain area.
Keitz, who is running for re-election in the upcoming primary in June says several of his campaign signs, specifically in the Coarsegold area, have been defaced with swastikas.
“As candidates for public office we are privileged to engage the people of Madera County in a process that is meant to encourage thoughtful debate and challenge our opponents to exemplify the principles of respectful discourse,” says Keitz. “Unfortunately, it appears that there are persons in our county who believe it is appropriate to vandalize as an act in support of their candidate.”
Keitz says the defacing of his signs began as soon as they went up, and has continued for weeks. He notes that after one 4 x 8 ft. sign on Highway 41 at Road 415 was defaced, another sign was put over it. That sign was ripped down and thrown across the highway. Three signs in the Coarsegold area have been vandalized, he says, at least one with a swastika and another with the word “murderer” sprayed in red paint.
“The use of a symbol associated with the horrific actions of a madman and connecting it with the word murderer in an effort to smear me is not only disgusting personally, but it is a gross act of character assassination of the hard working people in the office of the District Attorney,” says Keitz.
Raymond resident Sandee Connolly says she posted a sign for Keitz on her fence, but it too was vandalized.
“Unfortunately, there are some people who chose to use spray paint and place swastikas on those signs on my personal property,” she says. “I was shocked to see that action and feel that in this day and age this is a reprehensible way to deface anything.”
She says she took the signs down out of respect, but calls the act despicable.
Keitz says he is calling on the other candidates to encourage civility and respect from their supporters during the campaign.