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Resident files complaint regarding missing campaign sign

A Sherwood resident has filed a report with police, charging that a member of the Sherwood City Council removed a campaign sign from Sherwood Middle School on Oct. 13.

Susan Claus filed a report saying an acquaintance told her that she saw a campaign sign in the back of Councilor Dave Grant’s pickup. The sign, which Claus said she had created, urged residents to vote against an upcoming annexation measure.

Grant, who is president of the Sherwood City Council, told a deputy from the Washington County Sheriff’s Department that he had been campaigning for incumbent Mayor Keith Mays when he saw several signs that had been knocked over and broken, and placed them back in the ground. Along the way, the report stated, Grant found a “no on measure 34” sign “and rather than leaving it there or placing it back in the ground, he picked it up and put it in his truck.”

Grant said he had planned to take the sign to Sherwood Public Works Department (where signs that violate city code are taken) but was on his way to the Onion Festival on Oct. 13. He later went to his office not wanting to leave items from an Onion Festival booth in his pickup for too long, he later explained.

Claus told the deputy that she was supporting Mayor Mays’ opponent, former Sherwood Police Chief Bill Middleton, in the upcoming election, and opposed the annexation measure as well. She reported that beginning in September 30 to 40 of the signs she had made had been removed.

Shortly after the incident on Oct. 13, a Sherwood police officer contacted Grant. A sheriff’s deputy followed up, contacting Grant on Oct. 15. Grant told the deputy that he probably should have left the sign where it was but pointed out that he wasn’t trying to hide it in the bed of his pickup, noting that it was on top of signs supporting Mays.

Claus told the deputy she was concerned that an elected official would remove a sign that opposed the annexation issue, and wanted the department to send a message, saying, “if it could be determined Dave had committed a crime, she wanted him arrested.”

Contacted Oct. 15, Grant said that the sign he found was the only one he picked up and that any inference that he had removed other signs was “completely bogus.”

Sgt. Bob Ray, a spokesman for the Washington County Sheriff’s Department said no charges have been filed based on the information.

When KOIN Channel 6 News first reported about the incident during an Oct. 24 broadcast, they referred to it as “signgate.”



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