Voter Accuses Investigators of Tampering in Mail-In Ballot Probe - NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth

Voter Accuses Investigators of Tampering in Mail-In Ballot Probe

District Attorney defends investigation

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    A Dallas voter complained Friday that a District Attorney representative crossed the line with questions about who he voted for in a June school board run-off. (Published Friday, Aug. 11, 2017)

    A Dallas voter complained Friday that a District Attorney representative crossed the line with questions about who he voted for in a June school board run-off.

    Marcus Wood said he received a call from the Dallas County District Attorney’s office Thursday with questions about his mail-in ballot.

    The office is conducting an investigation of alleged ballot fraud after accusations surfaced in the May City Council election campaign, primarily from West Dallas.

    One suspect connected to the West Dallas accusations has been arrested, a man named Miguel Hernandez.

    Wood said he agreed to answer questions and told the caller he knew of no tampering with the June ballot that he said he mailed himself but refused to say who he voted for.

    “They’re tampering with it by having knowledge of my ballot,” Wood said. “Given the current climate about elections and election fraud and election going on with the federal government, and all the rest, I am not happy at all. There’s no ballot integrity as far as I’m concerned if everybody’s looking at who I voted for.”

    Texas mail-in ballots are returned in two sealed envelopes to keep the ballot secret. The voter’s name is not on the ballot and can only be associated with the ballot if the envelopes are kept with the ballot.

    That’s just what happened by court order after suspicions of impropriety surfaced in the May and June Dallas elections.

    “We don’t want people in the community to think that this is a common thing, that anybody would know who they voted for. They won’t,” District Attorney Faith Johnson said.

    The District Attorney said the question about who Wood voted for was only to verify that his ballot had not been altered or substituted.

    “We wouldn’t know that but for the fact that we had the conversation and we inquired and we investigated,” Johnson said. “He was a part of getting to the bottom of voter fraud so we appreciate that.”

    Wood said he still intends to make complaints to the Texas Secretary of State and the judge who signed the order sequestering the ballot materials.

    The fact that Wood was questioned about the Northeast Dallas Independent School District run-off in June indicates the investigation has expanded from the West Dallas complaints that started the probe but Johnson declined to provide details on the investigation.

    “We have a wide investigation and as you know we’re still investigating,” Johnson said.

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