NC teens apologize and put back stolen Trump signs to avoid criminal charges

After allegedly stealing Donald Trump signs from Hickory business, teens return them in exchange for no charges. Photo by Sarah-Blake Morgan/WBTV

HICKORY, N.C. (WBTV) — Outside a Hickory business you’ll find a row of yard signs supporting Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, but those signs were missing until Tuesday afternoon.

Wade Moose owns Systems Depot in Hickory.

“I put up five signs and of course someone stole them right away,” he said.

High Definition surveillance cameras captured the entire incident that unfolded Saturday afternoon. The video shows a teenager running across the street and snatching up the signs. Moose quickly handed the video over the Hickory police.

“The officer said, ‘are you going to press charges?’ and I said, ‘absolutely, if you want me to’,” he said.

But Moose and the officer came up with a better idea. In exchange for bringing the signs back, the business owner agreed to not press charges.

“Since they had clean records and they were young nice guys, he asked me to not press charges,” Moose said.

Thursday afternoon, the teens were given a chance to apologize to Moose.

“I’m human and when I was your age, I made mistakes too. and I learned from them,” Moose told the teens.

WBTV’s camera was the only one rolling as the teens re-assembled each of the stolen signs.

The teens said they were just having some fun. In fact, they said they don’t plan on voting for either candidate in the election.

“It was just a joke, but as you can see all this happened,” one said.

“When people are ignorant and think it’s funny to take signs down because they’re not for that particular candidate, they’re taking the right of free speech away from an individual,” Moose said.

With this, these two can walk charge-free, but Moose hopes they gained something, too.

“Hopefully they can learn something from this and maybe this will do them or somebody else some good,” he said.

Moose said he offered the boys a job if they ever need one.

Copyright 2016 WBTV. All rights reserved.

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