Mount Pleasant — On the eve of Election Day, state agents arrested a 59-year-old man on a charge that he removed or damaged Town Council candidates’ campaign signs at a busy intersection.
James Bradshaw Cannon of Belcourt Lane in the Dunes West community faces a misdemeanor count of vandalizing or removing political campaign signs. The charge carries up to a $100 fine and 30 days in jail.
He posted $2,105 bail shortly after his arrest Monday and was released from jail on his own recognizance.
Cannon is retired, jail records stated. He had no previous arrest history in South Carolina.
Contacted by telephone Tuesday, he said that his arrest was “embarrassing” and that he did not want to discuss it.
An arrest affidavit from the State Law Enforcement Division alleged that on Saturday Cannon took two of incumbent Town Councilman Ken Glasson’s signs that were posted legally at highways 17 and 41. Surveillance footage captured the theft, and a witness later identified Cannon as the culprit in the video, the affidavit stated.
As a SLED agent interviewed him, Cannon acknowledged taking the signs and damaging another that belonged to council candidate and local businessman Ben Bryson, the document stated.
The court paperwork did not offer a motive or state Cannon’s political affiliations.
Bryson said in a Facebook post that he and Glasson had been dogged by vandalism that did thousands of dollars worth of damage to their signs. They found several of the banners slashed and destroyed, Bryson said.
Fed up, the candidates bought wildlife game cameras and planted them near their bigger signs. Footage from the cameras led to Cannon’s arrest, Bryson said. He called the purchase the “best $49 we have ever spent.”
Reach Andrew Knapp at (843) 937-5414 or twitter.com/offlede.