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Ventura County Roundup / East | THOUSAND OAKS

Campaign Sign Removal Protested

October 14, 1998|ANDREW STEVEN HARRIS

Armed with a videotape they say illustrates political favoritism, three candidates for City Council have accused city workers of unfairly tearing down their campaign signs.

Several signs for candidates Dan Del Campo, Laura Lee Custodio and Wayne Possehl, who are running as the so-called "clean sweep" slate, were removed from the property of a supporter whose parcel backs against Lynn Road.

After more signs disappeared, the supporter set up a video camera and learned that a city employee was removing them.

The three candidates are trying to unseat council incumbents Andy Fox and Judy Lazar, who are up for reelection.

Deputy City Atty. Tim Giles said the signs had been attached to equipment owned by the Calleguas Municipal Water District located on the supporter's property. Therefore, they were placed there in violation of city regulations regarding political signs, he said.

Now that the slate's campaign sign has been put on a wooden stake the city has left it alone, Giles said.

The city has threatened criminal prosecution for sign violations, adding it will charge violators for the cost of removing future signs, the candidates said.

"What happened to the notion of due process?" said Custodio, a teacher and licensed attorney. "I haven't received any notice of this, and now the city is threatening to fine me and prosecute me."

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