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Vivid Halloween decorations at county clerk's office makes visitor uneasy

Brittany Costello
October 17, 2017 10:28 PM

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Pumpkins, bats, witches and goblins – those are just some of the things that come to mind when thinking about Halloween decorations.

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But one woman says the Bernalillo County Clerk's Office went beyond that; one might say even crossing over into the afterlife.

“I was expecting a typical government waiting room and sterile chairs,” said Pamela Woodruff, a local resident concerned about the decorations. “It was like walking into a haunted house.”

The spooky look was unexpected to Woodruff, who said she and her fiancé were stopping by the office to obtain a marriage license.

And she says the decorations went a bit far beyond the fun spirit of the holiday. Instead, it was like stepping into another realm, where wait times turned residents into a bag of bones. In some parts of the office, sheets adorned with bloody handprints hang from the ceiling. 

“It was just really creepy,” she said. “I couldn’t believe that they would have decorated a public place that way.”

The office was decorated by county clerk employees, who spent their own time and money on fixing up the place for October.

“You know, I think they're fun,” said County Clerk Linda Stover. “It’s all in the holiday spirit of Halloween. I’m really sorry and I feel bad that we've offended somebody. It certainly wasn't meant to do that.”

Stover said the gory trimmings and knick-knacks add to the fun of All Hallow’s Eve.

“It’s brought a lot of comradery. We've had a lot of laughter, we've had a lot of fun doing it,” Stover said.

That casual attitude, meanwhile, is something Woodruff finds even more disturbing than the decorations.

“People dying is in good fun, then sure, yeah. I don’t agree,” she said.

Officials with the office say they decorate the area not only to be festive but for the many trick-or-treaters that visit them this month.

Stover said she invites anyone who feels uncomfortable by the decorations to talk to her, but Woodruff says the bloody sheets and hand prints should be taken down.

Credits

Brittany Costello

Copyright 2017 KOB-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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