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Are there penalties for removing street signs? Can the culprit be charged if the theft results in an accident?

Ken Little

“It is larceny and if they are caught with it in their possession they can be charged with possession of stolen goods,” said Sgt. Jerry Brewer of the New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office.

No North Carolina statute directly addresses theft of highway signs and how that may relate to criminal or civil liability in a wreck, “but I can see where contributing to the accident could come into play,” Brewer said.

There are at least 33 states with laws on the books relating to the theft and sale of scrap metal, but North Carolina statutes specifically mention only copper. In Arkansas and other states, highway signs are included in the law.

User-contributed question by:
Steve Clemmons

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