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Hech's tire flattened during fest

October 07, 2002|by ANDREW SCHOTZ

andrews@herald-mail.com

An unusual series of disturbances surrounding a local state senate campaign continued Saturday, when both candidates appeared at Frederick's In The Street Celebration.

When Del. Sue Hecht - who is trying to unseat state Sen. Alex X. Mooney - returned to her car at the end of the day, the stem of her tire had been pulled out and the tire was flat, Hecht campaign manager Sue Tuckwell said.

Hecht, a Democrat, filed a report with Frederick Police, who dusted for fingerprints.

Tuckwell said a group of people wearing Mooney T-shirts followed Hecht's car during a parade Saturday and shouted derogatory comments at her through megaphones. She said Hecht supporters did not bother Mooney, a Republican, during the parade.

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Also, someone scrambled Hecht's cell phone and police told a man to stop videotaping Hecht and her campaign staff, Tuckwell said. She called it "a targeted pattern," but wouldn't specifically accuse Mooney or his aides of being responsible.

Mooney could not be reached for comment Saturday night. Messages were left at his home and with a campaign press secretary.

This marks the second time in less than a month that Hecht has called police for an incident connected to the senate campaign.

Overnight on Sept. 11, someone broke into Hecht's campaign headquarters in Frederick and stole a laptop computer containing privileged information about her supporters. The computer was never recovered.

Immediately after, Mooney issued a press release denouncing the theft and saying, "Anyone who broke into Sue Hecht's headquarters not only committed a crime, but they also committed an assault on democracy. That they did it on Sept. 11 is even more horrific."

In May, Mooney campaign manager Erin DeLullo was caught using a fake name to try to sign up for Hecht's campaign. She signed the e-mail "Marie Acly," but the e-mail address was traced back to her.

Mooney apologized on DeLullo's behalf.

Staff writer Scott Butki contributed to this story.

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