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I am Karen Sindel, Republican candidate for Escambia County Commissioner District 1. I need your help to ensure that democracy and freedom of speech in this District 1 election does not continue to be subverted.

We are a grassroots campaign fighting against the established good old boy network and our campaign signs are being systematically torn down or destroyed within days of being legally erected with the permission of the property owner. We have experienced thousands of dollars of stolen or damaged signs.

These illegal actions disrespect free speech and disrespect you by trying to control the message you receive; that there is an alternative District 1 candidate to the status quo.

It disrespects our supporters who contribute their hard earned money to help us get out our message and tell you about my 20 years of private business and public service from Vice President of the Naval Aviation Museum Foundation, to President of Junior Achievement of Northwest Florida, and to serving on the Santa Rosa Island Authority Board and the Escambia County Planning Board.

It disrespects my Navy veteran husband who works hard building, and erecting our signs in his off hours. Often they take my large signs and put their signs in the very holes he dug.

But, they don’t stop there. They also stalk me; following me around when I am walking the District 1 neighborhoods talking to voters and business owners. They park a block away waiting for me to get permission to legally post the signs and then often bully the person to take them down or come back at night to steal or damage them. Escambia County deserves better than this.

This is the same type of sick, sad behavior I experienced in a previous race when I was trailed by a private investigator, tried to break into my home, but I was home and frightened him off, had my mailbox destroyed, and my dog poisoned. But they are wrong. This illegal, malicious behavior by these cowards only reinforces my resolve to win this race, break the status quo and give you the voice at the Escambia County Commission that you deserve.

I understand why they are afraid of me. My 20 years of experience and proven results clearly demonstrates that I do my homework, speak the truth as I know it and am not owned by anyone. They know that I have always and will continue to represent what is in the best interest of the citizens of Escambia County.

They do not want you to know, for example, that I am the only candidate demanding a citizen participated Masterplan be immediately funded and developed for not only the 640-acre site adjacent to Navy Federal known as OLF8, but for the entire Beulah area, including The Bluffs north of Beulah. The self-appointed developers, who are substantial financial supporters of one of my opponents, are pushing to turn OLF8 into a commerce park without input from the Beulah residents and businesses.

You can help ensure democracy and freedom of speech is not subverted by watching for and reporting anyone you see stealing or damaging my signs or any other candidate’s. Please take down their tag number, vehicle make, model, and color and report them to the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office at (850) 436-9620.

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