Man upset over campaign sign theft finds out he, too, broke law

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SEMINOLE COUNTY, Fla. - As Election Day draws closers, more campaign signs are popping up around the state.

As races get competitive, one local man claimed to have caught a campaign sign thief on camera.

Ed Riordan thought it was interesting that he caught a man yanking out his signs opposing a tax for Seminole County schools. Video shows the man throwing the signs in a Lexus and then driving off.

“To actually catch someone in the act like I did, I was very surprised,” said Riordan.

Riordan said he put his signs in a right-of-way next to the signs in support of a school tax for the pro-tax fundraiser inside the Sam Sneads Restaurant in Maitland. But WFTV found out both Riordan and the mystery man were doing something against county code.

Median and rights-of-way are public property, which means signs cannot be erected.  However, signs are also not allowed to be moved. The only time someone can remove a sign is if it is on their property.

WFTV checked and found Orange County Code Enforcement officers picks up more than 100,000 signs a year. Officials said the man in Riordan’s video could get a $150 fine if it was determined he was stealing signs.

Riordan now knows he could get the same fine for placing his signs, but he wants the man in the video to learn the same lesson.

“I want to know why it is that they did it,” he said.

Riordan plans to show the video to Orange County deputies.