A student from James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia, plead guilty Monday to voter fraud after registering the names of dead voters with the Harrisonburg registrar’s office. The student, Andrew J. Spieles, 21 will spend up to 100 days in prison.
WTVR-TV reported that the student was working for Harrisonburg Votes a political organization founded by former Harrisonburg Mayor Joe Fitzgerald, a Democratic activist who was in office from 2002 to 2004.
“In July 2016, Spieles’ job was to register as many voters as possible and report to Democratic campaign headquarters in Harrisonburg,” a spokesperson for the U.S. attorney’s office told WTVR. “After filling out a registration form for a voter…Spieles entered the information into a computer system used by the Virginia Democratic Party to track information such as name, age, address, and political affiliation. Every Thursday an employee [or] volunteer hand-delivered the paper copies of the registration forms to the registrar’s office in Harrisonburg.”
Note: Much to the chagrin of Mirror staff, this event occurred at our alma mater. Ouch.
A staff employee at the registrar’s office recognized one of the names he submitted which turned to out to belong to the deceased father of a Rockingham County judge. The employee notified the police, and the registrar’s office, after further investigation found other falsified forms.
“Some were in the names of deceased individuals while others bore incorrect middle names, birth dates, and social security numbers,” the spokesperson continued. “The registrar’s office learned that the individuals named in these forms had not, in fact, submitted the new voter registrations.”
According to the news report, Spieles later admitted to committing the crime.