KPIC, a station in Oregon, said that it had received “multiple calls” about the display near Interstate 5. The footage showed an effigy, constructed with a black wet suit and wearing a pink bra and jacket. It was hanging from a crane, along with a sign that read “Vote Trump.” Another sign dangling from the crane read: “Treason? Ask her.”
The display appeared be a crude depiction of Clinton; Two local news stations that spoke with Pitner, KPIC and KEZI, characterized it as an effigy of the Democratic presidential nominee.
According to KPIC, which called the display as an effigy of Clinton in the headline of its report:
The man who put it up, Billy Pitner, says Hillary Clinton has committed a crime that he wanted to bring attention to.
“I’m allowed to have my feelings, right, wrong or indifferent,” Pitner told the station.
He also noted: “Here you are. Got your attention, didn’t it?”
Pitner is the first to admit these are his opinions, and that he’s not trying to offend anyone in particular.
He even said the Clinton effigy may have been taking it a bit far.
A working telephone number for Pitner could not be located Tuesday.
The display was reportedly near Sutherlin, which is in Douglas County and about an hour and 45 minutes from Medford. The Register-Guard, a local newspaper, reported that it was visible for a couple of days.
Dwes Hutson, of the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, said that officials had only received one call about the display by Tuesday.
“To my knowledge, the man has not committed any criminal offense, so it’s not something that involves us,” he said.
Jared Castle, of the Oregon Department of Transportation, said this is not the first time that Pitner has erected a display on his property.
“This is a gentleman that owns a piece of property that abuts Interstate 5,” Castle said. “And over the last couple years has put different signs and opinions about, you name it — everything from alien landings to political positions. And so this isn’t the first time that he put information out there. I think what sets this one apart is that he chose to hang an effigy, a female mannequin.”
That, Castle said, upset some local churches, who felt that it “portrays violence against women.”
“They’ve asked him to take it down,” Castle said.
ODOT does have an outdoor sign program, he said, but that’s really focused on making sure campaigns don’t put signs out on the transportation right-of-way or an unsafe area. It also deals with signage in scenic byways.
“That’s really where our focus is at, is on safety and on campaigns,” Castle said. “Individual property owners who put information on their own property is not our purview.”
The display was the latest example of the controversial — and at times aggressive — statements and conduct that have continued as the 2016 presidential campaign has progressed.
Castle, the ODOT spokesman, said that local reaction to the effigy was “one of disgust.”
“It’s the great struggle,” he said. “He has a right to his opinion. It would be better if he conveyed it in a way that didn’t offend as many people, as this has done so.”