Alamance 12 face jail terms for casting votes

And a former Democrat turned rabid Republican is determined to put them there:

Mr. Sellars, 44, is one of a dozen people in Alamance County in North Carolina who have been charged with voting illegally in the 2016 presidential election. All were on probation or parole for felony convictions, which in North Carolina and many other states disqualifies a person from voting. If convicted, they face up to two years in prison.

“That’s the law,” said Pat Nadolski, the Republican district attorney in Alamance County. “You can’t do it. If we have clear cases, we’re going to prosecute.”

Just a side-note, which is definitely relevant to this discussion: Pat Nadolski lost his Republican Primary for District Attorney a few months ago, which had many hoping he would relent and drop the charges against these folks. But true to form with this crazy election cycle, a local judge retired from the bench, and rumor has it Nadolski will be chosen by local R's to run. We (Alamance Dem executives) just chose our candidate Andy Hanford, who lost to Nadolski in the 2014 Democratic Primary. The year after that Nadolski switched parties to Republican, and has since allied himself with our local Latino-hating tyrant Sheriff Terry Johnson. The reason I (tried to) explain that convoluted mess was to underscore Nadolski's determination to prosecute these folks, who merely made a mistake about their qualifications. He's still got right-wing voters to impress, and maybe a little national attention to garner for himself:

The cases are rare compared with the tens of millions of votes cast in state and national elections. In 2017, at least 11 people nationwide were convicted of illegal voting because they were felons or noncitizens, according to a database of voting prosecutions compiled by the conservative Heritage Foundation. Others have been convicted of voting twice, filing false registrations or casting a ballot for a family member.

The case against the 12 voters in Alamance County — a patchwork of small towns about an hour west of the state’s booming Research Triangle — is unusual for the sheer number of people charged at once. And because nine of the defendants are black, the case has touched a nerve in a state with a history of suppressing African-American votes.

Okay, while I do appreciate the New York Times taking interest in this case, using a Colorado correspondent who specializes in "rural stories" to cover this might not be the best idea. That "patchwork of small towns" includes a city (Burlington) with a population of 53,000, and an overall County population of 162,000 or so.

With that complaint duly filed, said Colorado correspondent did a pretty good job of exposing how heartless these criminal proceedings are:

Whitney Brown, 32, said that no judge, lawyer or probation officer ever told her that she had temporarily lost her right to vote after she pleaded guilty to a 2014 charge of writing bad checks. Her sentence did not include prison time.

By November 2016, she was complying with her probation and focused on moving ahead with her life, caring for her two sons, who are now 6 and 9 years old, and taking online classes to become a medical receptionist. So when her mother invited her to come with her to vote for president, Ms. Brown said she did so without a second thought.

Months later, she got a letter from state election officials telling her she appeared to have voted illegally. “My heart dropped,” she said.

No jail time for the original crime, but she may get two years for mistakenly voting. Let that sink in.

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