Former supervisor stole campaign signs

A former Kennett Township supervisor faces misdemeanor charges for stealing election campaign signs. A criminal complaint against Michael E. Elling, 87, was filed Oct. 10. According to an affidavit for probable cause, Elling was photographed taking signs belonging to the Richard Leff election campaign.

Leff replaced Elling on the Board of Supervisors in 2013, according to Leff’s campaign manager, Jeff Yetter.

The affidavit says Leff contacted Kennett Township police on Oct. 3 about his signs being taken from a property at Bayard and E. Hillendale roads. Leff reportedly has had long-standing permission from the property owners to place his signs on their property. A detective investigating the thefts put up trail cameras at the same location on Oct. 4. after learning that replacement signs had been put up.

A day later, Yetter, contacted police to say four of the replacement signs were missing. The detective reviewed images from the cameras and said they show Elling taking the signs.

“Upon reviewing the images, captured by the trail cameras, [the detective] found that one camera captured images of a subject physically holding one sign and pulling another sign from the ground…The subject depicted in the photographs is Michael Elling, a township resident who is active in township affairs, known to township employees, and was immediately identified by township personnel,” the affidavit reads.

The affidavit also says the second camera captured the image of a Chevrolet Tracker with Delaware tags registered to Elling Exploration, Inc. and that police records show the vehicle had previously been stopped while operated by Michael Elling.

The matter is awaiting a preliminary hearing in district court.

Leff is running for re-election against Hunter Tower.


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About Rich Schwartzman

Rich Schwartzman has been reporting on events in the greater Chadds Ford area since September 2001 when he became the founding editor of The Chadds Ford Post. In April 2009 he became managing editor of ChaddsFordLive. He is also an award-winning photographer.



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