Eight Bison football players charged with ballot fraud linked to conservation fund, medical marijuana measuresBISMARCK – Eight current North Dakota State University football players and one former player are among 11 people facing charges in connection with voter fraud tied to general election ballot measures.
By: Forum News Service , The Jamestown Sun
BISMARCK – Eight current North Dakota State University football players and one former player are among 11 people facing charges in connection with voter fraud tied to general election ballot measures.
Four of the accused are starters on the football team.
North Dakota Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem and Secretary of State Al Jaeger identified the individuals charged as: Aireal Boyd, Josh Colville, Josh Gatlin, Demetrius Grey, Jennifer Krahn, Lane O’Brien, Samuel Ojuri, Brendin Pierre, Antonio Rodgers, Bryan Shepherd and Marcus Williams.
All have are charged with facilitation of voter fraud or filing a false statement, according to Stenehjem and Jaeger.
The charges are Class A misdemeanors.
Criminal complaints claim that all circulators of a petition are required to sign an affidavit stating they witnessed all the signatures and that all signatures are genuine.
An investigation found that the statements were not correct and that many of the individuals whose signatures appeared on the petitions had not, in fact, signed them.
As a result, two proposed measures will not be on the November general election ballot.
The affected measures are the proposed Constitutional initiative establishing a Clean Water, Lands and Outdoor Heritage Fund and the statutory initiative for medical marijuana.
“Petition fraud is an affront to the election process and to all citizens, and particularly to those who legitimately signed the petitions hoping to have these measures placed on the ballot. That’s why it’s essential that these allegations are investigated and violations prosecuted,” Stenehjem said in a written statement.