Posted: Apr 2, 2014 5:31 PM by Russell Jones
Updated: Apr 2, 2014 5:31 PM
PORT ALLEN - The attorney for ousted Port Allen mayor Deedy Slaughter filed a complaint with the U. S. Department of Justice Wednesday, claiming a voter fraud investigation by the West Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff's Office was actually an attempt to suppress the votes of elderly or disabled black citizens.
The complaint from attorney Ronald R. Johnson claimed that elderly or disabled minority voters had been asked by sheriff's office investigators this past weekend if they'd voted for Slaughter. Johnson said the voters felt intimidated and threatened, and claimed some were afraid to return their mail-in ballots.
The sheriff's office said last week they were looking into discrepancies on several hundred mail-in ballots after they noticed signatures on the ballots were not matching up with signatures on file. Col. Richie Johnson told News 2 that in at least one case, election officials had received mail-in ballots for someone who showed up to vote early and said they'd never filled out a mail-in ballot.
Richie Johnson said that at least one of the votes in question came from someone tied to Slaughter's camp, and on Wednesday said the DOJ complaint did not change their investigation.
"We will not allow our criminal investigation to be underminedor dictated by any candidate's subversive tactics. If the Justice Department joins the investigation now, maybe it will save them a trip at a later date," he said. "The investigation is ongoing and gaining momentum which would probably explain the apprehensiveness on the part of anyone who may be involved with the voter fraud in this election."
Slaughter's attorney requested in the complaint that federal authorities send someone to monitor Saturday's special mayoral election. Slaughter faces Kirby Anderson Sr., Larry Bell, and Richard Lee III in the election.