HomeElectionsPublic records requests show active FDLE investigation of Supervisor of Elections office
Public records requests show active FDLE investigation of Supervisor of Elections office
September 28, 2021
BY JENNIFER CABRERA
Documents received through public records requests show that the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) is actively pursuing an investigation against the office of Alachua County Supervisor of Elections Kim Barton and former employee T.J. Pyche.
Our previous report on the investigation details the allegations, including evidence that Pyche visited the Alachua County Jail on three dates in 2020 and registered at least 9 inmates who later voted while they were ineligible to vote under Florida law. At least 18 people voted by mail from the Alachua County Jail, and of those, 10 had recent convictions before voting in the 2020 general election and were thus still serving their sentences at the time of the election, a clear violation of the law. 12 of the inmates who voted are now in state prison, and 4 were awaiting trial for battery, kidnapping, homicide, and murder as of June 1, 2021. All 18 owed fines, fees, and/or restitution from cases that preceded their registrations and/or ballots.
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Pyche resigned from his $64,118 salary position on June 24, 2021, effective July 9, 2021, shortly after the FDLE investigation began.
On June 29, 2021, FDLE Crime Intelligence Analyst Madeline Nicholl sent a public records request to the Alachua County Supervisor of Elections, asking for certified copies of Alachua County Voter Registration forms for 31 voters. Of the 31, 18 are the ineligible inmates discussed in our earlier report, and the other 13 are felons who are ineligible to vote, including a sex offender and a federal inmate.
On July 16, 2021, Nicholl sent a second public records request asking for “All emails associated with amendment 4 voter registration, inmate and felon registrations, Jail Outreach services, or any emails relating to the Alachua county jail sent or received by” Pyche or Barton, from January 1, 2020, through the present day.
Mail-in ballots for the City of Gainesville Special Election in November will be going out in a few weeks, and many of these ineligible voters have standing requests to receive mail-in ballots. For example, the first name on the list, Dedrick Baldwin, Sr., has a mailing address at the Alachua County Jail and is scheduled to receive a mail ballot for the November election. Dedrick was arrested on May 11, 2019, and sentenced to 12 years in jail on multiple felony charges on August 2, 2021. Information on the registration status of voters can be looked up here with the information on the list in the June 29 public records request.