With the Aug. 6 primary election deadline less than a week away, the campaign of one Lynnwood City Council candidate has accused another of removing the candidate’s literature left on people’s front doors and replacing it with her own.
Candidate Julieta Altamirano-Crosby filed a report with the Lynnwood Police Department July 31 that accuses opponent Rosamaria Graziani’s campaign of tampering with Altamirano-Crosby’s campaign flyers.
Both candidates are campaigning for the open Position 5 seat on the council.
Lynnwood Police Commander Sean Doty confirmed Thursday that the report had been filed, and that it “alleged a juvenile associated with a campaign rival had removed several campaign flyers from some residences near the 18000 block of 38th Ave. W.”
MarSue Calleros, a volunteer for Altamirano-Crosby’s campaign, reported witnessing an adolescent boy with Graziani’s flyers in his hands approach multiple houses in a cul-de-sac located near 188th Street Southwest and 38th Avenue West, where she and Altamirano-Crosby had just placed campaign flyers. The boy allegedly then removed Altamirano-Crosby’s flyers and replaced them with Graziani’s. Calleros said she told police that Graziani was sitting in her parked car, and that she saw the boy run back to that car after replacing the flyers.
Altamirano-Crosby was not present at the time of the incident, having left before the boy and Graziani arrived, Calleros said.
Typically, the type of activity being alleged is covered via the state law (RCW 29A.84.040) governing the removal or defacing of political advertising, which are misdemeanors, Doty said.
When reached for comment, Graziani denied sending anyone to remove Altamirano-Crosby’s flyers.
“We did not take any flyers,” she said. “That is slander and I take my reputation very serious.”
Instead, Graziani said she believes the flyers were taken inside by the residents after Altamirano-Crosby and Calleros had left.
“We only saw two flyers and we left them where they were,” she said. “So, I am assuming that the flyers were already taken.”
This is not the first time during the 2019 election season that the candidates have had issues. In late May, Graziani filed a voter registration challenge with the Snohomish County Auditor’s office against Altamirano-Crosby, alleging she was a Mukilteo resident who only recently moved to Lynnwood and did not meet the year-long residential requirement to run for an elected position in the city. However, the auditor’s office dismissed the challenge two days later.
Altamirano-Crosby’s campaign manager Jeanne Crevier said that Altamirano-Crosby plans to pursue criminal charges against Graziani. Altamirano-Crosby was also advised to take the allegations to the Lynnwood City Council, because the incident is a political matter, Crevier said.
–By Cody Sexton