HOUSTON - It's a fact of American life that political campaigns frequently turn downright nasty, and this primary season is no different, as two men were caught on tape Sunday shamelessly vandalizing the sign of a local candidate.
The victim in this case was Republican State House Candidate Shelly Barineau who spoke to FOX 26 as she ferociously block-walked the west Houston District.
For Barineau, the tightly contested primary took a particularly ugly turn at her very own office building when two unknown individuals were caught red-handed on surveillance video, first encroaching on private property and then cutting down her campaign sign - a sign which Barineau had the building owner's permission to post.
The perpetrator of the vandalism can be seen dropping the sign near a dumpster before boarding a dark SUV and leaving with an accomplice.
"I'm a woman of integrity and honor and when I saw that, I just felt like it was so brazen and arrogant in broad daylight, to come to my corporate office with a no matter, however you please, just cutting down my sign," said Barineau.
Barineau says the perpetrators did more than destroy property, they in effect, trampled on her right to political free speech.
As for a criminal investigation, the marathoner and mother of four said she's fully focused on the March 1 finish line and not looking back.
"If there's any apologies necessary it might be to my 80-year-old dad who put up the sign. Crime is already bad, clearly taking down this sign is another crime. We don't need any more crime. Let's go fight it. Let's win it and let's restore our homeland," said Barineau.
FOX 26 reached out to all of the candidates in the HD-133 Republican Primary and asked if any recognized the individuals in the video.