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3News Investigates: A vote from the grave?

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Summit County election officers are taking a look at an absentee vote forged final month by a lady who died in June.

SAGAMORE HILLS, Ohio — The absentee poll forged beneath the title of a deceased Sagamore Hills lady and later counted in final month’s election is now being investigated by Summit County election officers.

To this point, it’s the solely poll out of over 280,000 forged within the county that’s being questioned.

“Proper now, that is so preliminary,” County Board of Elections Director Lance Reed informed 3News Investigates. “We all know one thing occurred; we simply do not know what occurred but.”

A grandson of Carol Liederbach initially posed the query on the board’s Fb web page, asking after the election how his deceased grandmother might’ve voted. Voting data can be found on the Summit County election board web site. 

Liederbach died June 28 on the age of 83, in accordance with her obituary. She was buried July three at All Saints Cemetery in Northfield.

Election officers say an absentee poll utility was mailed to Liederbach’s house in September and a poll was despatched out and returned in October. It was permitted after which counted within the Nov. three common election.

In the course of the board’s assembly this week, members mentioned the dates during which the poll data was despatched and its contradiction to Liederbach’s obituary. Members additionally mentioned Liederbach’s signature on the poll safety envelope and the absentee poll utility, which one member mentioned gave the impression to be barely completely different from the signature card held by the board.

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“By the point it was flagged, we had really obtained her poll and vote again to our workplace, after which pulled one in every of her registrations and the affirmation discover simply so we might sort of take a look at the signatures, and date of beginning, deal with, to sort of ensure that it was the very same particular person,” Reed mentioned. “It seems that it was this lady.”

The poll and utility have been mailed to her house, the place she lived together with her husband, Denis. 3News reached out to Denis Liederbach by telephone, however the widower declined to talk about his spouse’s poll.

“I’ve nothing to say, bye,” he mentioned, earlier than hanging up.

Usually, county well being officers ahead a weekly listing of residents who’ve died to election officers. Employees checked and located no notification on Liederbach’s dying.

“That’s sort of one of many greatest query marks we nonetheless want to seek out out is, we don’t know, did she die domestically?” Reed requested. “One way or the other that data didn’t get transmitted to us. Did she go away elsewhere?.”

Whereas President Donald Trump has alleged wide-spread fraud in a number of states, he has not supplied proof. Liederbach’s voting document exhibits she forged a Republican poll as soon as, within the 2016 major. 

Whereas there have been studies throughout the nation of remoted instances of voter irregularities, Reed mentioned final month’s election confirmed no proof of wide-spread fraud.

“We’re very assured within the outcomes we had right here in Summit County, and yeah, that is definitely simply an remoted incident,” he acknowledged.

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The board is awaiting the girl’s dying certificates earlier than figuring out if they may contact sheriff’s deputies for a felony investigation. Knowingly voting for another person in Ohio is a fourth-degree felony, punishable by as much as 18 months in jail and a $5,000 tremendous.

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