Frankfort Local News

Conway, Grimes Team Up to Prevent Voter Fraud

Kentucky officials are once again planning to crack down on voter fraud in the May 22 primary.

Attorney General Jack Conway and Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes announced their partnership on the issue Tuesday, giving details of this year’s Election Integrity Task Force.

The task force investigates allegations of fraud. Some allegations come from state investigators, but many come from voters.

Conway’s office operates a voter fraud hotline for residents to report potential fraud on Election Day. Concerns before the polls open can be addressed to county clerks or to Grimes through the state Board of Elections.

Representatives from the U.S. Attorney’s office are also helping investigate fraud claims this year, since there are federal races on the ballot. There were six calls to Conway’s hotline on primary day last year. In 2008, 59 calls were fielded.



Local News Politics

Indiana High Court Hears Arguments in SOS Succession Dispute

From the Associated Press:

Indiana Supreme Court justices peppered both sides with pointed questions during arguments to determine whether ousted Secretary of State Charlie White was ever a legal candidate for the office.

Most of the questions during today’s hour-long hearing centered on state laws regarding voter registration and the requirements for the secretary of state’s office. The justices posed several hypothetical questions about how White’s situation might be applied to ordinary voters who live in one place and vote in another.

At issue is a court order mandating that the state recount commission certify Democratic runner-up Vop Osili the winner of the 2010 election because White’s candidacy was invalid. White was removed from office this month after being convicted of voter fraud.

The state argues the governor should appoint White’s successor.

Local News Politics

Charlie White Sentenced To Home Detention

A Hamilton County, Indiana judge has sentenced former Secretary of State Charlie White to one year of home detention for voter fraud, theft and other offenses.

White was convicted early this month of six felony counts related to his voter registration in the 2010 Republican primary.

The judge denied White’s request that the convictions be reduced to misdemeanors so White could return to office.

White was accused of putting his ex-wife’s address as his residence on the voter form when he was actually living at a townhouse with his fiancé.

Prosecutors say he lied on the registration to protect his seat on the Fishers City Council.

White is expected to appeal his convictions.

The Indiana Supreme Court will hear arguments next week in a political battle over who should permanently replace White as Secretary of State.

Local News Politics

White Convicted of Six Counts, Removed From Office

A Hamilton County, Indiana jury has found Indiana Secretary of State Charlie White guilty of six felony counts. The convictions mean White is also out of a job.

White was convicted of three counts of voter fraud, two counts of perjury and one count of theft related to his voter registration during the 2010 Republican primary. Prosecutors say White used his ex-wife’s address on his voter registration form to protect his seat on the Fischers Town Council while he ran for state office, when he was actually living in a townhouse with his fiancé outside the district.

Each conviction carries a penalty of up to three years in prison.
The jury returned its verdict about 2:00am today after getting the case early Friday afternoon. The panel acquitted White of the most serious charge against him, fraud on a financial institution.

White says he plans to ask the judge to reduce the convictions to misdemeanors at sentencing, so he can reclaim his job. Governor Mitch Daniels has appointed White’s chief deputy, Jerry Bonnet, to serve as interim Secretary of State.

White’s attorney did not present any defense witnesses or evidence during the trial. He told the Indianapolis Star after the verdict that he did not regret that decision.

White defeated Democrat Vop Osili in the 2010 general election.

Local News

Jury Deliberations Continue in Charlie White Trial

A jury in Hamilton County, Indiana has been deliberating since about 12:30pm in the voter fraud trial of Secretary of State Charlie White.

The Indianapolis Star reports the panel has been deliberating through the evening and was scheduled to be served dinner at 7:00pm.

Special prosecutor Dan Sigler Jr. argued this morning that White knowingly committed voter fraud for political power.

White’s attorney, Carl Brizzi, said in his closing arguments that prosecutors’ case “is based entirely on assumption, innuendo and leaps.” The jury is expected to begin deliberating after today’s closing arguments.

White is charged with seven felony counts, including fraud, perjury and theft. He faces removal from office if convicted of a single count and could be imprisoned.

Prosecutors claim White used his ex-wife’s address on his voter registration form in the May 2010 Republican primary when he actually had a condo elsewhere with his fiance

Local News

Indiana Judge: White Ineligible To Hold Office

It appears likely the question of Indiana Secretary of State Charlie White’s eligibility to hold office will be taken up by the state Supreme Court.

A judge has ruled that White should not have been on the 2010 ballot.

White, a Republican, defeated Democrat Vop Osili in the 2010 general election, but state Democrats contested the outcome, saying White is ineligible to be secretary of state because he used his ex-wife’s address on a voter registration form, allegedly to protect his seat on the Fishers Town Council.

Marion Circuit Judge Louis Rosenberg agreed this week, declaring Osili the winner.

Secretary of State spokesman A.J. Feeney-Ruiz says the ruling will be challenged.

“This is unprecedented. There are a lot of moving parts happening right now. My understanding is that the attorney general’s office will be filing an immediate stay and filing for an appeal with the Indiana Court of Appeals,” he said.

Feeney-Ruiz says White has no plans to step aside.

“The secretary is the still the secretary of state, will continue to be the secretary of state and will continue to do the work of the secretary of state as he has done and he will continue to do as this process plays out.”

White also faces criminal charges related to his registration and will stand trial next month.

White says he lived at his ex-wife’s house at the time but occasionally stayed at at a residence he and fiancé purchased.

Local News Politics

Indiana Judge: Charlie White Must Stand Trial

A judge has rejected a motion by Indiana Secretary of State Charlie White to have his criminal charges dismissed.

White faces seven felony counts, including voter fraud, for allegedly lying about where he lived at the time of the 2010 primary.

In seeking the dismissal, White pointed to an Indiana Recount Commission ruling this year that upheld his election. But Hamilton Superior Court Judge Stephen Nation says that ruling has no bearing on the criminal case.

The Republican Secretary of State is accused of lying about his address so he could remain eligible to serve on the Fishers Town Council.

A judge in Marion County is expected to rule soon in a civil suit by Democrats that seeks to have White declared ineligible for office because he allegedly committed voter fraud.

(Information for this story came from the Associated Press)

Local News

Ruling In White Case Expected Within A Month

A judge says he’ll rule within 30 days whether Indiana Secretary of State Charlie White is eligible to hold office.

A Marion County judge heard arguments today on the challenge by state Democrats of a June decision in White’s favor by the Indiana Recount Commission.

Democrats argue White improperly used his ex-wife’s address in the Fishers community to vote in the 2010 Republican primary when he also had a condo with his then-fiancee.

White is acting as his own attorney in the challenge but did not attend the hearing.

He also faces criminal charges of voter fraud and theft and is scheduled to stand trial January 30.

(Information for this story also came from the Associated Press)

Local News Politics

Ruling Expected This Week In Charlie White Case

The Indiana Recount Commission is expected to issue a decision this week on whether the state’s top election official is eligible to hold office.

Republican Secretary of State Charlie White is accused of using his ex-wife’s address on a voter registration form in order to keep the town council seat he held at the time in the Fishers community, in case he lost the race for his current office.

Democrats say White also listed a new condo as his address on other documents during that time.

White testified before the panel last week that his ex-wife’s home was his permanent address at the time, but he also spent a lot of time on the road campaigning and occasionally stayed at the condo, where he planned to move after re-marrying.

A ruling against White would invalidate his election and force his removal from office. He’s also awaiting trial in a separate criminal case, in which he’s charged with voter fraud and perjury.

The commission, made up of two Republicans and one Democrat, meets Tuesday.

Local News Politics

Indiana Judge Rejects Charlie White Immunity Request

A judge has denied a request from Indiana Secretary of State Charlie White for partial immunity for his testimony before the state’s Recount Commission.

The panel will hold a hearing tomorrow on a complaint that White was not a valid candidate for the office he won last November.

White does not want his testimony at the hearing to be used against him at his upcoming trial on voter fraud charges. He’s accused of using his ex-wife’s address on a voter registration form when he no longer lived there.

Judge Louis Rosenberg said that there was no clear legal precedent for granting immunity if it had not been requested by prosecutors.

(Information for this story came from the Associated Press)