Thursday, October 14, 2010
Three sentenced in voter fraud case
Three defendants in the Benton County voter fraud case were sentenced Monday, Attorney General Jim Hood said.
Henry Massey, Lillie Jean Norton and former supervisor Tate King appeared before Judge Andrew Howorth in Benton County Circuit Court.
Judge Howorth sentenced Tate King, on two counts voter fraud, to five years, two suspended, one year to serve in the custody of the Mississippi Department of Corrections (MDOC), two years to serve on house arrest, two years on post release supervision and a $5,000 fine. King was ordered to report to the Benton County jail next Monday at noon for transportation to MDOC.
Henry Massey, on one count conspiracy to commit voter fraud, was sentenced to three years, one year of house arrest followed by two years of post release supervision and court costs.
Lillie Jean Norton received three years supervised probation after pleading guilty to one count conspiracy to commit voter fraud. Norton helped testify against her co-defendants.
These sentencings are the end result of a three-year-long investigation and 16 defendant indictment. All 16 defendants have either pled guilty or were found guilty of vote buying in Benton County related to elections in 2007.
“The judge and juries have sent a message that vote buying is outdated and will not be tolerated any longer in Benton County,” Hood said.
The only case pending sentencing is for David Massey, indicted on one count of conspiracy to commit voter fraud and three counts of voter fraud. That court date has not yet been set.
The investigation and prosecution of these cases was handled by the Public Integrity Division of the Attorney General’s Office.
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