BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (WISH) - For two years, signs pleading for information regarding the disappearance of Lauren Spierer could be seen around Bloomington.
Now, some of them are gone. City officials said, essentially, that it was time.
"For the many people who have felt the signs should have been taken down long ago, it's long overdue," the city said in an emailed statement. "For those who believe they should remain in place, no time was right to remove them."
Some of the 4 foot by 8 foot signs surrounded Fire Station No. 4 located at 300 East Fourth Street near Lincoln Street. Bob Loveiscek said when he came to work Friday morning, the signs were gone.
After receiving a message from an upset viewer, 24-Hour News 8 started digging for answers.
Loveiscek, president of the firefighters' union said he and other firefighters spent their money to upgrade the signs that were beginning to fade.
"We made a commitment to the Spierer family to honor their daughter until something was found out about her disappearance," he said. "They do know about the signs being removed."
Loveiscek said the office of the mayor received complaints from upset residents.
Staff at City Hall said they had no idea the signs were gone.
"I didn't know this was an issue until you walked in the door, " Senior Zoning Planner James Roach said. "This is unusual. We are usually dealing with signs at used car lots. I do not know how they were permitted in the first place."
A woman identifying herself as the mayor's assistant said she has not received any voicemail or email complaints about the signs. She said complaints may have gone directly to the mayor’s email, which she doesn't have access to.
Later Monday afternoon, the mayor's office released this statement:
The decision to remove the signs around the community was an effort to balance many and varied community interests and input.
For the many people who have felt the signs should have been taken down long ago, it's long overdue. For those who believe they should remain in place, no time was right to remove them.
The signs were initially put in place by volunteers two years ago.
Our initial intention was to remove them after IU graduation last May. But local firefighters then decided to renovate the volunteers' signs in April, so a decision was made to wait another six months, which was last week.
No disrespect is intended nor does it reflect any loss of interest in the case. The community has been very engaged in the case and will remain so. Posters about the case remain up throughout the campus and community, including in city government buildings, and police agencies continue to actively investigate.
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