Virginia Dem Caught Hours Before Election Driving on Suspended License To Steal Campaign Signs

Virginia delegate Chris Hurst (D.) /
November 2, 2021

A Virginia Democrat who is running for reelection was caught stealing campaign signs while driving on a suspended license the night before polls opened.

Radford City police on late Monday night pulled over a vehicle after officers saw a woman exit the car to remove campaign signs posted outside of a local polling place. After approaching the vehicle, the officers discovered that state delegate Chris Hurst—whose license is suspended—was behind the wheel.

Police gave Hurst a "driving while suspended notification" and asked his female companion to return the campaign materials. Under Virginia law, it is illegal to remove or vandalize campaign signs.

While Radford City sheriff Mark Armentrout did not reveal why Hurst's license was suspended, police in January 2020 pulled over the Democrat on suspicion of drunk driving. Hurst went on to take a preliminary breath test, which showed a blood alcohol concentration of .085 percent—just above the legal limit of .08. Under Virginia law, however, state legislators are immune from arrest unless they commit "treason, a felony, or a breach of peace," meaning that Hurst was let off with a warning.

Hurst in 2018 joined the state legislature after he defeated Republican incumbent Joseph Yost by 9 points. He now faces Republican challenger and Army veteran Jason Ballard, who in a Tuesday morning statement admonished Hurst.

"I am deeply disappointed that Chris Hurst has decided to end his campaign in such a reckless way," Ballard said. "His latest misstep is yet another reason why he doesn't deserve another term as Delegate."

Hurst's campaign did not return a request for comment. Polls opened in Virginia at 6 a.m. Tuesday and will close at 7 p.m.

Published under: Virginia , Virginia 2021