May 10, 2013
Some Wichita citizens who wish to remain anonymous have jointly offered a $5,000 reward through Crime Stoppers for information leading to arrests in two separate incidents of vandalism that targeted candidates in last month’s Wichita City Council elections.
On January 8, Wichita City Council Member James Clendenin was driving with his family in their 1997 Chevy Suburban when he felt and heard a suspicious sound coming from the front of his vehicle. Mr. Clendenin immediately stopped the car and discovered four of the six bolts holding the vehicle’s passenger side front wheel had been sheared off. The lug nut on a fifth bolt was missing, and the sixth lug nut was very loose.
“Because the campaign for the Third District City Council seat had been heating up, there is no doubt in my mind that what happened that placed my family and me in danger appeared to be politically motivated,” said Clendenin.
In another incident, on April 1, Wichita Fourth District City Council Candidate Joshua Blick reports someone vandalized his home, one of his vehicles and several campaign signs with spray paint, causing several hundred dollars in property damage.
Mr. Blick reported the damage, consisted of large “Xs” spray painted on the windows and siding of his home, on the windows of his vehicle and on several of his campaign signs. One of the signs was a large campaign sign near the intersection of Kellogg and Maize Road. In addition, a brick was thrown into the windshield of his vehicle.
“While such acts amount to dirty campaign tactics that may be commonplace in larger cities across our country, we want to stop them from growing in our community,” said the donors. “This type of criminal activity has no place in any political campaign, regardless where that campaign is held. We hope someone with knowledge of these two incidents will step forward and report them anonymously.”
To report these or any felony crime, tips must be anonymous. Tipsters should either call the Crime Stoppers hotline at (316) 267-2111, submit a text message tip via their cell phone by texting TIP217 then their message to CRIMES (274637), or by submitting a tip online at www.wsccs.com.
All tips are anonymous and no one will ever ask the tipster’s name.