SHARECOMMENTMORE

By Mike Rush

ST. JACOB, Ill. (KSDK) - The race for mayor in the small Illinois village of St. Jacob is getting attention from federal and state investigators.

It's because of a flyer circulating in the community showing the mayor and his family in the crosshairs of a gun scope.

One resident describes it as small town horse manure, but the mayor is taking it as a serious threat.

The flyer talks about "pulling the trigger" and "taking the mayor out" with votes in Tuesday's election.

But the implication is hard to miss, with the crosshairs and a picture of a man with a gun.

Like many small communities, St. Jacob has picket fences, American flags, and brutal politics.

Late last week the flyer came to residents in the mail with no return address.

St. Jacob Mayor Ray Muniz is seen caught in the crosshairs labeled "The Thug," his wife dubbed "The Bully Wife," and his kids also targeted.

All along with the picture of a man with a gun and captions including, "They are in our sights, let's drop them where they stand and "You have the bullets to end this man's reign of terror," and "Your votes are those bullets...."

"If that's metaphorically speaking, it concerns me," said Mayor Muniz Monday. "Yeah, because those are the kinds of things, you never know what someone's going to do."

His wife, Trina, added, "Furious first, and then just appalled that somebody would stoop to these levels."

The flyer, which is full of grammatical and spelling errors, also makes derogatory statements about Muniz's Spanish heritage and gay people he's appointed to his board.

Muniz says he doesn't know who's behind it all. His opponent in the mayoral race, Rich Schiefer says don't look at him.

"You think that something like that coming from my campaign that's very, very negative would benefit my campaign," said Schiefer.

While there's an interesting theory going around town.

"It's all reverse psychology he's using for sympathy votes," said Ferd Keller.

Some residents say it gives their community a bad name.

Resident Steve Pate said, "That's not what we need to show off our village and it's wrong on all accounts. I think whoever did that I hope gets caught."

The mayor has forwarded the flyer to federal and state officials and the police are making extra passes by his house. Even though he appears to be the intended victim, he believes everybody will suffer.

"It rips at the very social fabric of what we're about here because now you have friends and you have neighbors that are looking at each other and their being accusatory," said Muniz.

Neither candidate will speculate about who they think is behind it, but each accuses the other of contributing to a nasty political atmosphere that would make something like this possible.