OPP are reminding residents that vandalizing political signs is a  criminal offence after eight were taken in Faraday over the weekend.

OPP Constable Catherine Yarmel explains that if you’re caught you will face charges under the criminal code for theft and/or mischief. That means you could be fined or, at worst, face jail time along with having to attend a court hearing. A trespassing charge is also possible if the sign is placed on private property. Under the Canada Elections Act, you’re prohibited from interfering with election advertising – like signs – without proper authority.

She adds that the law doesn’t change when it comes to home-made signs. “Moving a sign, damaging a sign, or stealing property that isn’t yours would still be considered a criminal offence,” Yarmel explains.

It’s also pointed out by Yarmel that if ever see a sign that’s vulgar, it’s most likely not a police matter. Police will go to the scene to assess the situation, but she says it’s likely that it will be a civil matter, not one that involves the OPP.