(East Wenatchee, WA) The Douglas County Sheriff’s Office seeking assistance from the public for any information leading to the arrest of any persons suspected of damaging road signs. When persons shoot, steal, destroy, or otherwise deface signs designed to aid motorists and improve traffic safety, it creates a dangerous condition to everyone using public roads. Regulatory and warning signs benefit the public by warning of slide areas, sharp corners, controlled intersections, and many other road condition which could cause serious or even fatal traffic accidents.
In addition, replacing or repairing damaged road signs costs the taxpayers money which is better spent on roadway and engineering improvements. I spoke with Cort Johnson who supervises the Douglas County Sign Shop. He explained that since January of 2012 there have been at least 175 county road signs damaged by vandalism. Using that figure, the cost to replace or repair the signs is almost $14,000. This does not include the time it takes for law enforcement to respond to and try to investigate such incidents.
We implore people not to damage county property designed to help our citizens. Damaging road signs is a crime which could lead to a felony arrest depending on the circumstances. Additional violations could include shooting from a roadway and having a loaded firearm in a motor vehicle. The county has reward money available to anyone who can assist Deputies in apprehending suspects.