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Sign flap at Brookhaven Town meeting

Oct., 2010: John Bryne is captured on camera

Oct., 2010: John Bryne is captured on camera gesturing with his middle finger after picking up Randy Altschuler lawn signs. Photo Credit: Photo by Handout

Two residents used the public comment period of the Brookhaven Town Board meeting Wednesday to present what they said was evidence of Democratic town employee John Byrne stealing political signs that advertised Republican congressional candidate Randy Altschuler.

The residents — Jan Williams of Nesconset and Maureen McCormack of Port Jefferson — produced a photo of Byrne, an aide to Democratic town board member Connie Kepert, making an obscene gesture while carrying Altschuler’s signs. The residents said they are not affiliated with Altschuler or his campaign.

Byrne acknowledged in an interview that he is the man in the picture. However, he said the signs were illegally located on town property in the area of Horseblock Road in Farmingville and he was “taking out the trash.”

Brookhaven spokesman Jack Krieger confirmed it is not legal to place political signs on town property. The area where Byrne said the signs were placed is a public right-of-way on Horseblock Road.

The two residents had no comment on where the signs were placed.

Byrne explained his gesture by saying it was an appropriate response to someone driving by in a truck and demanding the signs be given back.

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