43,000 Absentee Ballot Votes Counted in DeKalb County, Georgia 2020 Election Violated Chain of Custody Rule

43,907 of the 61,731 absentee ballots deposited in drop boxes in the November 2020 presidential election in DeKalb County, Georgia–72 percent–were counted in official tallies certified by the county and the state, despite violating chain of custody requirements set forward in Georgia Emergency Rule 183-1-14-1.8-.14  promulgated by the Georgia State Election Board at its July 1, 2020, meeting.

That rule states absentee ballots placed in drop boxes, “shall be immediately transported to the county registrar” by the two person collection team, which is required to sign a ballot transfer form indicating the number of ballots picked up, the time the ballots were picked up, and the location of the drop box, and that, “The county registrar or a designee thereof shall sign the ballot transfer form upon receipt of the ballots from the collection team.”

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Fulton County Fails to Meet Their Own Deadline to Provide Absentee Ballot Chain of Custody Documents From November 2020 Election, Delays Response for a Third Time

Fulton County election officials have failed to meet a second response date they set to provide The Georgia Star News with complete chain of custody documents for absentee ballots deposited into drop boxes during the November 3, 2020, general election.  For a third time, Fulton County has extended their response date, this time to August 6, 2021.

Fulton County’s communication about the third extension comes more than eight months and five follow-up requests after The Star News filed an initial open records request on December 1, 2020, for the drop box transfer forms that document the critical chain of custody of absentee ballots deposited in 37 drop boxes installed throughout Fulton County for the 41 days of the November 2020 election period.

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Six Months After the 2020 Election, Fulton County Has Failed to Produce Chain of Custody Documents for 18,901 Absentee Ballots Placed in Drop Boxes

Six months after the November 3, 2020 election, Fulton County has failed to produce complete chain of custody documents for 18,901 vote-by-mail absentee ballots deposited by voters into drop boxes.

The Fulton County missing documentation is a little more than five percent of the estimated 333,000 vote-by-mail absentee ballots cast in the November 3, 2020 general election for which chain of custody documentation is still missing.

Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger has refused to collect, count, and verify the chain of custody documentation associated with an estimated 600,000 absentee vote by mail ballots deposited in drop boxes in the 2020 general election. Instead, Raffensperger has said it is a county responsibility. The Georgia Star News has filed Open Records Requests with all 159 counties in the state to obtain this documentation and report on it to the public.

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Ballot Transfer Forms Show 78 Percent of 89,000 Absentee Ballots from Drop Boxes in Cobb County, Georgia Were Not Transported to Registrar ‘Immediately’ As Election Code Rule Requires

An analysis of ballot transfer forms from Cobb County reveals that 78 percent of the more than 89,000 absentee ballots from drop box locations, required to be “immediately transported” to the county registrar according to Emergency Rule of the State Election Board for Absentee Voting, took more than one hour to be transferred to election officials.

State Election Board Emergency Rule 183-1-14 relative to securing absentee ballot drop boxes was adopted by the State Election Board at the July 1, 2020, meeting.

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