Note: The Orange County Courier Journal has been informed that several campaign signs in the Washingtonville - Blooming Grove area were also stolen. Thely are expensive to replace. Arrest is not a 'good look' during campaign season....or ever!
Fishkill Councilman John Forman, the Republican candidate for town supervisor has been arrested by the East Fishkill Police Department, sources have told Mid-Hudson News. Forman was allegedly found in possession of a sign that was equipped with a GPS tracking device. The sign was part of a claim by his opponent, Town Supervisor Ozzy Albra, that Forman actually resides in East Fishkill and is not eligible to serve in Fishkill.
Forman and incumbent Albra, a Democrat, have been locked in a heated battle for the town supervisor seat to be chosen by voters on November 7.
He has been charged with criminal possession of stolen property, a misdemeanor, by the East Fishkill police after the sign was found in his vehicle in Hopewell Junction on Tuesday. His arraignment date is tentatively scheduled in the East Fishkill Justice Court on November 1, 2023.
Forman is likely to face additional criminal charges in the Village of Fishkill related to the removal of other “anti-Forman” signs.
Retired New York State Trooper Louise Daniele serves with Forman on the town board. In an email to Mid-Hudson News, the councilwoman said Albra had mentioned to her that his signs were being “stolen”. Daniele says she offered to embed one of her AirTags into one of his (Albra’s) signs. “I placed the sign at Cary Road and State Route 52 in the Village of Fishkill last night (October 22) around 5:50 p.m.,” Daniele said, adding “This morning I checked to see if it was still there and it was missing and on my phone app, I could see that it was then at 2424 State Route 52 in East Fishkill.” Daniele said she recognized the address as being one of Forman’s work locations.
Councilwoman Daniele contacted Albra and met him at the East Fishkill address. The two looked into Forman’s parked vehicle and observed the missing sign. “I then alerted the sound on my app for the AirTag and we heard it beeping in his car,” at which point Albra notified the East Fishkill Police who responded to the location. Albra filed a complaint and the police began an investigation. According to Daniele, Forman admitted to police that he was in possession of more than 30 additional signs that he had removed and they were stored at his Sylvan Lake residence. Police followed Forman to his Sylvan Lake home in East Fishkill, collected the stolen signs, and arrested him.
Councilwoman Daniele said Forman should resign because he does not reside in Fishkill.
Supervisor Albra sent a statement to Mid-Hudson News saying that Forman had a stolen sign in his vehicle on Tuesday that was paid for by the Town of Fishkill Democratic Committee and they were authorized as part of the Albra re-election campaign.
“I went to the East Fishkill PD and filed a complaint regarding this incident,” Albra stated. “I was advised that the East Fishkill Police Department was questioning Forman.” Albra said the police advised him that Forman had an additional 35 signs at his Hopewell Junction (Sylvan Lake) residence which were taken as evidence. “This incident is a surprise and disappointment,” Albra said while thanking the East Fishkill police for their professionalism.
Forman was a county legislator representing the City of Beacon and parts of the Town of Fishkill for 12 years prior to being elected to the town board in 2022. He also sought the GOP nomination to run for the state assembly.
Councilman Forman was not immediately available to respond to requests from Mid-Hudson News.
Source: Mid Hudson News