Under the Dome

10 cases of ‘serial double-voters’ in NC sent to prosecutors

A State Board of Elections official said that investigators have referred 10 cases to prosecutors involving potential “serial double-voters” who appear to have cast ballots in two states during both the 2012 and 2014 general elections.

The referrals came from an investigations team assembled in March by the board.

The team examined results of a cross-checking of voter records among 28 states, including North Carolina. Double voting is a federal and state crime.

Referrals have been made to prosecutors in North Carolina and at least one other state, said Josh Lawson, a state board spokesman.

One suspect was arrested in Tennessee, he said. Information about where the referrals were made in North Carolina wasn’t immediately available.

Lawson said investigators initially focused on voters who matched first names, last names, dates of birth and last four digits of Social Security numbers who appeared to have voted in elections in both North Carolina and another state in 2012 and 2014.

Twenty-two voters fit that description, the investigators found. Of those 22, the records of seven voters from 2012 were destroyed in the other state.

“This doesn’t mean they won’t be referred for the possible 2014 double-voting,” Lawson wrote in an email.

Last year, elections officials told state lawmakers that a cross-checking of voter records among 28 states found about 730 voters whose first and last names, dates of birth and last four digits of their Social Security numbers matched exactly with a voter registered in another state and who voted in both states in 2012.

A separate check of 2014 records turned up hundreds of other matches. Lawson said the Board of Elections used the cross-check information as a “jumping-off point” for more traditional investigating, including interviews.

Additional criminal referrals to prosecutors are expected as investigators widen their nets to capture one-time double voters, Lawson said. Targeting those who might have voted twice in two different elections was an early effort to give law enforcement plenty of ammunition for charging suspects.

“You’re presenting those prosecutors something that’s a little more attractive,” Lawson said.

Patrick Gannon: 919-836-2801, @Pat_NCInsider