By: Sharon Aron Baron
Candidate Elvin Villalobos, who is running for Tamarac Mayor, was tired of his signs being stolen and decided to set up a surveillance camera to catch the culprits.
After having signs stolen five different times from the corner of NW 57th Street in front of the Greenhaven 12 community, Villalobos aimed his camera and caught two suspects on Saturday and Sunday stealing his signs – but leaving the signs of his challenger, Michelle Gomez, intact.
In the first incident recorded on October 20, a man between the age of 65-75 pulls up in a white van. He is wearing knee-length jean shorts, a blue Mario shirt and work shoes with dark socks. He wastes no time taking the Elvin Villalobos signs, yet leaves the Gomez signs. He then deposited the signs behind the hedges. But when Villalobos went to look for them, they were gone.
In the second incident recorded on October 21, a man around the age of 75-85, driving a royal blue car pulls over and steals his replacement signs. He’s wearing dark shorts and a belt, a blue shirt with a sticker on it, and white socks with loafers. He also stole candidate Michael Gelin’s signs, however, he left Gomez’s and Mike Gelin’s challengers signs untouched.
This follows an October 6 incident where we reported several large signs of Villalobos’ were destroyed.
Villalobos set up the camera hoping to catch the person who keep stealing the signs – signs that have cost his campaign over $2,000 to replace.
“If you’re going to take somebody’s signs, take everyone’s signs,” said Villalobos. “They cost money. It costs money to put them up.”
Each evening during early voting at the Tamarac Library, he picks up all of his campaign signs so they are not stolen in the middle of the night, and puts them back up in the morning.
According to BSO Captain Glassman, stealing campaign signs is a crime and the owner of the sign would need to be willing to prosecute. If you recognize any of the individuals, or would like to report a theft, contact Tamarac’s non-emergency line at (954) 720-2225.