ABERDEEN, Miss. (WCBI)- Aberdeen Police Chief Henry Randle is launching an investigation into alleged voter fraud surrounding the Ward 2 Alderman Special Election.
The police chief said two people are being investigated for allegedly trying to “fix” the election.
“When you come in to the police department and you’re complaining that people are taking advantage of your loved one then that really gets my attention, because that’s actually what they are doing is taking advantage of somebody that’s vulnerable,” said Chief Randle.
Randle said a tip came in from a family member of an elderly person. Apparently an absentee ballot arrived in the mail, but the family said no one requested it.
“Once I started with that family member, come to find out it was a whole lot more of the same thing going on,” the police chief said.
So the chief immediately began investigating.
“Just within the last 24 hours of doing this, we’ve come across 20 absentee ballots,” Randle explained. “These people are vulnerable adults and the other half do not even live in Aberdeen, they have other addresses. Then we have some people that live in different areas but they’re still on the voter roll and some people know that so they’re taking advantage of that too. ”
According to Randle, two people are ordering absentee ballots, marking them for a specific candidate, and even forging signatures.
“Basically what we are going to do is go after the two people that we know for sure that has done this and we’re trying to send a message to anyone else that’s doing this, let the candidates run a fair race,” the chief expressed.
The police chief calls this voter fraud and suggests the city should change the way absentee ballots are sent out to prevent something like this from happening again.
However, Aberdeen election officials said to their knowledge all of the proper procedures are being followed.
“The Aberdeen city clerks office has been in contact with the Secretary of State’s office to make sure that we are following all of the correct procedures for the upcoming election and they said we are doing everything correctly,” said Jennifer Rollison, Aberdeen Election Commissioner.
Randle said the two people under investigation could be charged with forgery, false pretense, and exploitation of a vulnerable adult.
So far no arrests have been made but are expected.