Recently, a longtime election official and his wife teamed up to vandalize Trump-Pence campaign signs in a neighborhood in South Carolina. Afterward, he was forced to resign from his post.
Dean Smith has been a member of Georgetown County’s elections board for 15 years. Smith was also the chairman up until last week when he resigned. On Wednesday, Smith offered his resignation within the first few minutes of the Georgetown County Board of Voter Registration and Elections meeting.
According to GAB News, a deer camera set up in a yard caught video of an individual removing and defacing Trump campaign signs.
Before he was recorded on video leaving the meeting, Smith read a prepared statement, admitting that his actions were “a brief lapse in judgment” that “might become a distraction [to the] conduct of this very important election. I therefore hereby resign from this board effective immediately.”
Although he did not comment about what he did, he said, “It had been an honor and privilege to work with all of you. I’m very proud of the 15 years I’ve been involved in Georgetown County elections, and I’m sorry it has to end like this.”
A reporter for GAB News followed Smith as he tried to exit the meeting grounds. The reporter asked if Smith personally defaced any of Trump’s campaign signs. In response, he walked away quickly, choosing to remain silent as he left the building and got into a vehicle. As the car drove away, he even held papers to cover his face.
“I’ve always prided myself that when I walk in that door I’m not a Republican or Democrat,” Smith had told the Coastal Observer. “I’m just an American and a Georgetown County citizen.”
According to the Coastal Observer, the footage from the camera showed someone take one sign and damage another by writing ‘dump’ over Trump’s name on October 4.
“The complainants stated they did not know the offenders but put the photos on social media via GAB News and received approximately five phone calls from people who identified the offenders from the photos,” the sheriff’s office report said.
According to GAB News, Rita Smith was identified as the person “taking one sign and damaging another by writing the word ‘Dump' over the name ‘Trump'.” Meanwhile, the authorities were told that Dean Smith was the getaway driver.
Rita Smith admitted to defacing Trump’s campaign signs but defended her removing the signage. According to her, the signs were “a violation of our HOA covenants.”
“Our emotions got the best of us,” Smith told the Coastal Observer. “It was because we were angry with the other resident.”
“The people that reported this put a sign on someone else’s property without their knowledge, and they insulted and attacked my wife who is the HOA president, and asked them to get rid of the signs. The camera that took our picture was also put on someone else’s property,” he continued.
The Smiths told the Coastal Observer that they filed their own report with the sheriff’s office. They claim that they are now the target of harassment.