CHICAGO (CBS) — Ald. Michael Zalewski (23rd) has been accused of storing campaign signs and other political material in a Chicago Park District fieldhouse.
As CBS 2’s Dana Kozlov reports, campaign workers for Zalewski’s opponent, Anna Goral, provided cell phone video of the campaign materials being stored at the Strohacker Park fieldhouse.
The fieldhouse was pretty much empty by Wednesday afternoon and Park District employees even changed the locks.
But the cell phone video shows what appeared to be a virtual satellite campaign office for 23rd Ward Democrats and incumbent Ald. Michael Zalewski.
Goral’s son, Tom Goral, said the campaign made the video after “we saw political signs” inside the fieldhouse on Tuesday.
In the video, they captured a befuddled Park District employee on their cell phone camera.
They said to the woman “we want to know why you’re running the campaign out of this office, out of the Park District.”
“I am Park District, I’m the supervisor here,” she said.
Asked if she could explain why the campaign signs were there, she said “no.”
Tom Goral said his mother’s campaign had been tipped off about possible political shenanigans at the fieldhouse.
“People have called our office saying they’ve seen precinct captains – well, so-called precinct captains – and individuals walking in and out,” he said.
Zalewski denied any knowledge of the situation, even though he’s also the 23rd Ward Committeeman.
“We are one month away from an election. I have no idea what games are going on out there, but no, we had nothing to do with that,” Zalewski said.
Zaleski also denied any knowledge that his precinct captain stole Goral’s campaign signs – something Anna Goral’s workers said they also captured on video and is now the subject of a court case.
It’s her word against his.
“People deserve to know. They need to know what’s happening,” Anna Goral said.
Tom Goral and other campaign workers said that, out of nowhere Wednesday afternoon, city building inspectors suddenly showed up at their office.
Zalewski said he doesn’t know why that occurred.