Sheriff’s Office responds to 5 to 3 complaint
by Sublette County Sheriff’s Office media release
April 16, 2012
April 16, 2012
Sublette County Sheriff’s Office – Dave Lankford, Sheriff
On March 27th, Paul Rock Pinedale residence, met with one of my deputies at the Sublette County Sheriff’s Office and stated that he wished to file a complaint on potential illegal activities that were being committed regarding a petition for an upcoming election to decrease the Board of County Commissioners rom 5 to 3 in Sublette County. The complaint included: fraudulent signatures on the ballot, improper petition form, and intimidation of petition supporters.
On the 28th of March, I contacted Keith Gingery, Teton County Civil Attorney and member of the Wyoming House of Representatives to assist me in this investigation because of what I foresaw as a conflict of interest. He contacted Julie Freese, Fremont County Clerk, an expert in Wyoming election law, and a registered Democrat to assist in the review.
On April 4th, they met with Mary Lankford, Sublette County Clerk, Tracey Hoover, Chief Deputy of the Sublette County Clerk’s Office and myself and the following is the summary of the findings and conclusions.
1. The Sublette County Clerk was correct in relying on Wyoming Statute 18-3-501 as to how to proceed with petition. W.S. 18-3-501 does not provide a set form for the petition and the Sublette County Clerk was correct in using a petition form from the Election Code as guidance in the form used. The Sublette County Clerk did not use an improper form for the petition or the election proposition to decrease the membership on the Sublette County Commission from 5 members to 3 members.
2. The Sublette County Clerk used very stringent requirements and controls to ensure that no fraudulent signatures were counted. By entering each name into a spreadsheet, the possibility of a double signature was eliminated. Each signature, address, and name was checked against the information available in the voter registration rolls. The Sublette County Clerk’s certification of more than the required 351 signatures is substantiated.
3. No evidence of intimidation of witnesses was presented by the complaining party, thus there is no substantiation of the allegation.
The full report is available through the Sublette County Sheriff’s Office.
Dave Lankford, Sublette County Sheriff
Printable version of this media release (PDF)