A Lake Havasu City business owner pleaded guilty last week in a case of political campaign signs stolen from state legislator Paul Mosley.
As many as 20 campaign signs belonging to Mosley were allegedly stolen this July, and others were defaced. Debi Ashton, of Lake Havasu Coin, was cited with the offense after witnesses and photographic evidence identified her as the culprit, police say. Ashton accepted a plea agreement Nov. 15, in which she admitted to one count of theft. Charges of tampering with political signs and submitting a false statement to law enforcement were dismissed by Lake Havasu City prosecutors.
According to the Lake Havasu City Prosecutor’s Office, Ashton was sentenced to one year of probation and seven days in jail with five days suspended. She will also have to pay a $1,000 fine, as well as $679.64 in restitution to Mosley.
Mosley, who was defeated in his bid for re-election, was satisfied that justice has been served.
“She has no respect for the law or anybody in it,” Mosley said. “The worst part is that she did it in broad daylight. She vandalized five signs and stole about a dozen-and-a-half more. As a political candidate and a legislator, I put up about 800 signs … most people wouldn’t know how hard it is, how long it takes, to do all of that work only for someone to steal them.”
While removing a candidate’s campaign sign without permission comprises a class 2 misdemeanor, the politicians themselves will be required to remove those signs by Wednesday under Lake Havasu City statute.