Naperville Man Charged With Hate Crime In Gustin Campaign Sign Defacement

DuPage County Sheriff photo of Keith Klingeman man accused of hate crime in defacement of campaign signs
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A Naperville man has been charged with a hate crime, accused of putting swastika stickers on two campaign signs of Patty Gustin.

Keith Klingeman, 49, was charged with two counts of hate crime, which is a Class 4 felony, and one count of criminal damage to property, according to a press release by DuPage County State’s Attorney Bob Berlin and Naperville Chief of Police Jason Arres.

Swastika Stickers Placed On Campaign Signs

Klingeman allegedly placed the marker-drawn stickers on the campaign signs sometime between October 2 and October 16, 2022, officials said. At the time, Gustin was running for a District 5 seat on the DuPage County Board, which she was elected to in November.

On Friday, December 9, Judge Jeffrey Mackay issued a $50,000 arrest warrant for Klingeman. Later that same day, he turned himself in to Naperville police. He was later released from custody after posting the required 10% of his bond.

Hate Crime “Simply Despicable”

“The allegations against Mr. Klingeman are simply despicable,” Berlin said. “Hate crimes have no place in a civilized society. All of us deserve to be treated with dignity and respect and anyone who violates this principle based on race, religion or any other hateful prejudice will be held accountable.”

Naperville Police Chief Jason Arres added, “Naperville strives to be an inclusive community that values diversity, and the actions alleged in this case directly conflict with that mission. This department will continue to vigorously investigate any allegations of hate crimes in this City and hold those responsible for such behavior accountable for their actions.”

Next Court Date

Klingeman will next appear in court on January 9, 2023.

Naperville News 17’s Kim Pirc reports.

Photo courtesy: DuPage County State’s Attorney’s Office

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