STANTON — A campaign worker for Sen. Alan Lowenthal, a Democrat running for Congress in the 47th District, was fired after being accused Tuesday of removing campaign signs belonging to his Republican opponent, Gary DeLong.

Stanton Mayor Pro Tem David Shawver said he witnessed the alleged sign-taking and reported the information to authorities.

Orange County sheriff's spokesman Jim Amormino confirmed that deputies took a theft report alleging a woman took three DeLong signs and replaced them with Lowenthal signs.

Mike Shimpock, a Lowenthal campaign consultant, said the woman - identified as Stephanie Wells - is a field organizer, and she was fired.

"Stephanie Wells no longer works for this campaign. She was terminated as of 2 p.m. as soon as we learned about the allegations against her," Lowenthal said in a statement Tuesday. "This incident does not reflect my values for how campaigns should be conducted."

Shawver said he was taking his grandchildren to school about 9:20 a.m. when he saw the woman taking the DeLong signs and putting them in the trunk of the black Saab she was driving.

"I said, 'Please put them back.' I even used the word please," Shawver said, adding that the woman responded with an expletive, got in the car and sped off through the residential neighborhood.

"I think she was embarrassed and overreacted," Shawver said.


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Shawver called DeLong representatives, who emailed him a photo of one of Lowenthal's campaign workers.

"Unless she has a twin, it's her," Shawver said.