Four men caught in a Sheet Metal Workers International Association (SMWIA) truck full of Romney/Ryan signs were issued summons for receiving stolen property early Friday morning in Perrysburg, OH.
Local police responded after residents reported seeing men stealing Romney signs in the middle of the night.
A Perrysburg Police Division incident report published by the Ohio Liberty Coalition listed four adult males in connection with the incident: Corey Beaubien, Christopher Monaghan, Sean Bresler, and John Russell. The police report indicated the vehicle in question was registered to SMWIA Local 33 of Parma.
John Russell and Chris Monaghan are listed as Business Agents for the union's Toledo district on the SMWIA Local 33 website.
Additionally, Facebook accounts appearing to belong to Beaubien, Monaghan, and Russell identify the three as employees of SMWIA Local 33.
Monaghan, age 41, uses a "Yes on 2" logo supporting the ballot issue championed by "Voters First Ohio" as his profile picture. He lists "The Ed Show" on MSNBC as a favorite TV show, and he lists the union bankrolled "We Are Ohio" super PAC as well as a page titled "I will vote for Barack Obama in 2012" under his "Likes."
Russell, age 39, likes "Obama for America - Ohio."
Beaubien, age 37, likes "Barack Obama," "Obama for America - Ohio," and Sherrod Brown's Facebook page.
The Sheet Metal Workers' Local 33 - Toledo page on Facebook is awash in liberal talking points promoting Barack Obama for president and attacking Romney. An October 27 status update pleading with members to help distribute campaign literature closed with, "We have 10 days left lets not wake up on Wednesday with our heads hung low because we lost. Remember right to work for less will be the death of us all."
Romney has voiced support for a national right-to-work law, which would allow employees in unionized workplaces to opt out of union membership without being forced to pay "fair share" fees.
The Ohio Liberty Coalition story quoted John McAvoy, president of the Northwest Ohio Conservative Coalition, as saying, "This morning 4 men driving a pickup truck registered to the Sheet Metal Union, Local 33 were arrested and charged with receiving stolen property – in the form of a bed full of Romney/Ryan yard signs, some measuring as large as 4'x8'."
"Also in the truck were tools such as drills, which were possibly used to take the large signs down," McAvoy added. "The signs were allegedly removed from several private property and business locations across Lucas and Wood County."
Tom Zawistowski, president of the Ohio Liberty Coalition, claimed that theft of Republican signage has been reported by conservative activists from across Ohio this year. "In Portage County, we had gotten advance notice that lots of signs were going to be taken last night and sure enough entire streets of signs were missing this morning. Most of which were on private property and many that were not near the road," Zawistowski said.
Zawistowski issued a warning as well, stating, "It will be interesting to learn from the investigation if those caught in Perrysburg were being paid by the Union while they were taking the signs. Our member groups will not hesitate to prosecute individuals who are caught taking signs and we encourage anyone that has a sign stolen to file a police report."
Cross-posted from Media Trackers Ohio.