Police warn against posting signs threatening criminals

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Police are recommending that people do not resort to making threats to try and stop crime.

Someone has been posting signs in Belknap Park and other areas warning would-be thieves to not try and steal from cars, promising that thieves would be "shot on sight."

FOX 17 found one of the signs up on Livingston Avenue.  Neighbors in the area said they were shocked when they first read what it said.

"We don’t see the necessity to shoot anyone around here you know ... I’ve never had any issue. All my neighbors are really nice," said Vittoria Lange, who lives on Livingston Avenue. "Everyone's friendly. I’ve lived in this area about 10 years now."

The Grand Rapids Police Department says they are looking into the signs. In a statement Tuesday, they said, "Bad joke or not so funny threat? Either way, we do not condone anyone putting up signs of this nature even if your intent is to try to prevent crime."

Richard Seccombe, who lives in the Belknap area, was shocked to learn of the sign's content.  He says, "Protect your property rather than being a vigilante. If something does happen, contact the police."

FOX 17 didn't know who put the signs up or why, as there is no contact info listed on them. That is, until the poster called the FOX 17 newsroom to explain himself.

“First and foremost, there is no threat … I don’t even own a gun," he said. "I went out in the middle of the night and put them up, and I knew the next morning it would get them talking.”

The anonymous poster says he was trying to start a conversation in the community about how to deter crime. He says that he and several others in the Belknap area have noticed a recent surge in property crime.

But police are asking future concerned citizens to take a different approach.  They ask anyone that sees the signs still up in public, to please take them down. The city cites an ordinance that doesn't allow unauthorized signs on poles.


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  • lml25

    Three points:
    1) It must be much WORSE than we even know about,for this type of action to be taken.
    2)People are assuming the thugs can read the sign.
    3)People are assuming,that the thugs that CAN read,will pay attention to the law for the first time in their lives.
    No chance.

  • Augstet

    Of course this sign is offensive! Grand Rapids welcomes ALL who not only exist illegally, but do illegally. These people should just paint rainbows on all the utility poles and love will be felt permeating throughout the communities. We should ban the word ‘theft’ too, because none of us really own anything anyhow. The turds can take it all.

  • Kiss off

    So just let the 13-90’s run rampant like always… let them steal… Michigan is an open carry state so if anyone catches them stealing somethin of theirs, bang.

  • C

    Leave the signs alone. Who cares whether it’s ‘proper’ or not? If the signs don’t work, nothing’s changed. If it works by reducing crime and no one gets hurt or killed, great. If it works but a forewarned bad guy gets killed, that’d be better yet.

  • Dan Smith

    LML25 again, in their infinite wisdom, brigading with their useless “points.”

    How about this point: your dimwitted “points” don’t appear on anything critical of the grifter-in-chief. His best bud Mr Epstein just got arrested for CSC/trafficking against minors and yet you don’t enlighten us all with your trademark “points”? That’s rich …

    • Who Cares

      You have to just ignore LML25. He’s a racist bigot who might be the dumbest person that ever posted on here!

    • Know the Score

      Dan Smith – Your Trump Derangement Syndrome is running rampant. How you somehow associate this story with Trump demonstrates your tragic illness. If you weren’t so ill you’d realize your assertions about Trump and Epstein are a manifestation of your diseased mind. “His best bud”? Trump saw the light and dropped Epstein like a hot potato years ago. One that is a close associate of Epstein is named Bill Clinton. This is not a manifestation but there are actual flight manifests confirming this fact. Please get help before it’s too late…


    Someone has obviously had enough of the lowlifes in his community! post those signs EVERYWHERE!!!!!!!!!!!!!! DO NOT STOP !!! POST THEM EVERYWHERE!! Whoever has a problem with someone trying to keep their community safer IS THE PROBLEM!


    Forget the dog, Beware of the owner!

    Violators will be s hot!

    This home protected by Smith & Wesson!

    Why does the grpd have a problem with this sign and not all the others that have been out there for years?

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