Florida Voter Fraud Case Leads to 10 Individuals Charged

Person voting in poll booth

Ten inmates at the Alachua County jail are facing felony voter fraud charges after they have been accused of registering to vote and successfully casting a ballot in the 2020 presidential election. All voter registrations have been revoked.

Initially, when reports came out about five former inmates illegally voting there were two Democrats, one Republican, and two more unaffiliated voters.

“I just knew it was too good to be true and the guy told me it was OK to vote as a felon,” said Henry Thomas Shuler III, one of the men facing charges.

Last year, the Alachua County Supervisor of Elections, Kim Barton, was tipped off to jail inmates who may have been improperly voting and filed complaints with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. Barton was cleared of any wrongdoing after she held a voter registration drive at the county jail saying it was the responsibility of the inmates to mark their voting eligibility.

An Alachua County election worker, T.J. Pyche, visited the jail for over two hours and informed Shuler it was legal to vote as a convicted felon who had not gone through the 2018 constitutionally amended process to get his rights restored. Pyche is no longer in his position as an elections worker.

Daniel Roberts, another inmate, recounted a similar story to Shuler, but did not specify who visited him in jail.

“I had officers come and speak with me about something about them investigating the man that came to the jail,” Roberts wrote from prison. “I haven’t heard about charges. Now I’m worried I don’t have a lawyer and can’t afford one. I’m in prison for three more years at least.”

Dedrick Baldwin, the 10th felon charged, claimed the registration drive at the jail resulted in as many as 70 people completing voter registration paperwork.

“They told us that if we weren’t already convicted of our current crime then we were able to sign up and vote,” Baldwin wrote. “They probably signed 65 or 70 people up that day, so I don’t understand how I can be charged with voter misconduct. All I was doing was what they told me I had a right to do.”

Voter registration issues and fraud claims have popped up across Florida since the 2020 election including in Gadsden County and Duval County.

As a result of numerous voter fraud investigations across the country, Florida lawmakers passed election integrity legislation in 2021 and 2022. While aspects of the 2021 law were recently struck down, the state is likely to appeal the ruling.

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Grant Holcomb is a reporter at The Florida Capital Star and The Star News Network. Follow Grant on Twitter and direct message tips.
Photo “Election Day” by Phil Roeder. CC BY 2.0.


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