UPDATE: Senior arrested for campaign sign thefts in 2 counties
A 70-year old Bledsoe County man is free on a 15 thousand dollar bond, charged with stealing campaign signs in Rhea County. But deputies believe the alleged sign stealing had little to do with politics.
Wednesday, May 14th 2014, 4:56 pm EDT
: New details in the case of Bledsoe County's alleged sign-stealing senior. Bledsoe County Sheriff Jimmy Morris says his office will be pressing charges against 70-year-old Buford Kizzar.
Kizzar was arrested Sunday night by Rhea County deputies after they say they found more than 130 campaign signs from Rhea and Bledsoe County political candidates in the back of his pick-up truck.
He's currently free on a 15 thousand dollar bond from charges in Rhea County, but Sheriff Morris says additional theft charges will be filed against Kizzar in Bledsoe.
Rhea County General Sessions Judge candidate Larry Roddy is recovering his campaign signs from the Rhea County Sheriff's Office Wednesday, after deputies arrested 70 year old Buford Lee Kizzar Sunday night for theft.
"I was ignorant to the fact that any of my signs was missing," says Roddy, who was oblivious to his connection to the case when he and the accused were in court Monday in unrelated cases.
"About 100 signs from Bledsoe County is my understanding and about 30 from Rhea County," says Fellow General Sessions Judge candidate Carol Ann Barron, who had 4 of her campaign signs missing in action.
But Barron and Roddy have plenty of company when it comes to campaign signs gone awry.
County trustee Neva Webb had her sign stolen too, along with candidates Shannon Garrison, Jamie Holloway, Rhea County Executive George Thacker, Ron Travis, Pam Peavyhouse and Jim Reed.
"I don't hold any ill will toward the guy, maybe he really did think the election was over," says Roddy jokingly.
Kizzar reportedly told the judge at his bond hearing that he was doing the candidates a favor, by taking the signs down after last week's primary vote.
We tried to get Mr. Kizzar's side of the story and despite obvious signs of life at his Bledsoe County home, our repeated attempts to get a comment were unsuccessful.
Both Roddy and Barron are appreciative of the quick work of the Rhea County Sheriff's Office.
"With just a few leads they were able to find him, apprehend him and collect all of our signs," says Barron.
Rhea deputies say despite the large number of signs stolen from Bledsoe County candidates, no charges are pending against Kizzar from Bledsoe County.
Kizzar is due back in court June 20th for the 6 misdemeanor theft counts and 3 felony theft charges he's facing.