Not cleaning up voter rolls lands county in crosshairs
Chesterfield County’s refusal to clean up its voter rolls before the Nov. 5 Virginia election threatens to turn the populous Richmond suburb into a legal battleground in the still-undecided attorney general’s race.
True the Vote, a national election-watch group, warned Chesterfield last month to scrub out ineligible voters or be sued. The State Board of Elections had given the county a list of 2,200 names to review.
But Chesterfield General Registrar Lawrence Haake declined to purge any voters, saying it was too close to the election. He also challenged the accuracy of the state list, saying 170 of the voters shouldn’t have been on it.
Chesterfield, a GOP stronghold, cast more than 103,000 votes in the attorney general’s race: 57,099 for Republican Mark D. Obenshain and 46,508 for Democrat Mark R. Herring. The 55 percent to 45 percent margin was notably smaller than Kenneth T. Cuccinelli II’s 66 percent to 34 percent win in Chesterfield in the 2009 attorney general’s race.
Mr. Herring holds a precarious 164-vote lead in the latest statewide tally with a recount likely after the elections board certifies the vote on Nov. 25.
“True the Vote is keeping a close eye on counties like Chesterfield that refused to follow [state] guidelines and remove duplicate voter registrations ahead of the election,” said Logan Churchwell, spokesman for the Texas-based organization.
Mr. Haake responded, “They should be giving me an award, rather than suing me. I’m doing what they profess to stand
doesn’t happen the property and contents will be auctioned off.”
The city in September seized Mr. Redding’s other establishment, TruOrleans Restaurant and Gallery in Northeast, on which the back taxes were owed. to San Diego, with the point seeming to be simply a perverse way for teenagers to show off in front of friends, Mr. Roman said.
That has prompted some suspects to videotape their attacks. And as those videos, or surveillance video capturing the assaults, has surfaced it may have triggered a ripple effect.
“Perhaps as more and more kids see the videos, if they are people predisposed to think this might be fun, seeing someone else do it, of course, could make it seem more possible,” said Jeffrey Butts research director at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York. “And so we could have copycats that come about as a result of the dissemination of the video.”
He added that the behavior has been around for years.
A series of “knockout” beatings occurred in St. Louis in 2011, including one that killed a 72-yearold man.
Police eventually charged seven juveniles with several of the crimes, but all the charges were dropped after a key witness did not appear in court, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
The crimes seem to happen in short spurts but have not increased enough to be seen as an emerging trend, Mr. Roman and Mr. Butts said.
“You have to be incredibly unlucky to be victimized by this. I wouldn’t worry about going to Columbia Heights and Adams Morgan,” Mr. Roman said. “With so much social media like YouTube and Vine as ways to get video out, I think these things have a tendency to spread faster than they used to but I suspect they will also flare out faster.”