The Commerce Township worker got away with 13 stitches, but city leaders are worried about kids’ safety as political tensions rise in the community.
COMMERCE TOWNSHIP—There were razor blades. Hidden strategically and unexpectedly on a “Trump 2020” political sign that shouldn’t have been placed on city property in the first place.
A Commerce Township employee was injured by the sign on Oct. 7 while he was doing his job removing political signs from the right of way in the community. Commerce Township has an ordinance that signs must be 33 feet from the center of the roadway, while the sign was reportedly 24 feet from the center of the road, and “clearly within the right of way” according to the Sheriff’s Office.
When the employee was removing the sign, he reportedly encountered a booby-trapped “Trump 2020” sign. It sent him to the hospital.
“When he went to remove one of the signs, he was cut by razor blades that had been attached to the bottom edge of the sign,” a press release stated. “Both signs removed from that location had several razor blades taped all along the bottom edge.”
Homeowner Claims Her Signs Have Been Stolen in the Past
Deputies on scene reportedly spoke with the female homeowner, who told them that Trump signs had previously been stolen from her property. She said that previously, upon returning home from a vacation, she found her signs in her backyard.
Two signs were taken by deputies as evidence, with an evidence technician employed to aid in the investigation.
Commerce Township Supervisor Dave Scott, was reached out to by The ‘Gander Newsroom but did not respond by press time. Scott told WDIV in Detroit that the employee thought he was electrocuted prior to realizing “he was bleeding aggressively.”
Scott said the employee drove himself to the hospital.
“Very angry. Very upset,” Scott told WDIV. “Why would someone set a boobytrap sign to harm someone? A child could have picked it up.”
One female neighbor said she was surprised, and that this was another incident of hateful political rhetoric gone wrong.
“It’s really too bad that someone would go to that length to protect a political sign.”
A Storm Brews Across the State and Across the Nation
This incident comes in the wake of a plot to kidnap Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and violently overthrow Michigan’s elected government foiled by the FBI and state law enforcement. This follows an overall rise in right-wing political violence and domestic terrorism as the 2020 election unfolds.
President Trump has caught attention for not calming these escalating tensions. When asked to denounce violent extremism in the first Presidential debate, he said “stand back and stand by” instead. The particular group Trump had been asked to condemn, the Proud Boys, have called for even more pro-Trump violence in the past.
The militancy of some Trump supporters, whether attacking Gov. Whitmer or storming the Capitol Building with guns, is further sharpened by the refusal on the part of Trump to ensure a peaceful transfer of power should he lose the Nov. 3 election.
His refusal to commit to a peaceful transfer of power and his encouragement to “stand by” have already been interpreted as a signal to the Proud Boys. As Newsweek reported Monday, a Proud Boys supporter warned that should Trump not be re-elected there would be a civil war to keep him in power. This is in line with reporting by the Atlantic earlier this year, as far-right extremist groups have been mobilizing and training for exactly that kind of occurrence.
Staff Reporter Katelyn Kivel contributed to this report.