Arrest sought of Colorado clerk in voting tampering case

Jul 14, 2022, 10:27 AM | Updated: 6:04 pm
FILE - Tina Peters speaks to supporters at her election watch party in Sedalia, Colo., on June 28, ...

FILE - Tina Peters speaks to supporters at her election watch party in Sedalia, Colo., on June 28, 2022. An arrest warrant was issued Thursday, July 24, 2022, for Peters, a Mesa County, Colo., clerk clerk indicted on charges of tampering with voting equipment, after she allegedly traveled out of state despite a court order not to do so, according to court documents. A judge revoked bond for Peters after District Attorney Dan Rubinstein said in the documents that he had learned she traveled to Nevada for a conference. (AP Photo/Thomas Peipert, File)

(AP Photo/Thomas Peipert, File)

DENVER (AP) — An arrest warrant was issued Thursday for an indicted Colorado clerk who has become a hero to election conspiracy theorists after she allegedly traveled out of state despite a court order not to do so, according to court documents.

But a lawyer for Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters asked the judge to cancel the warrant because he said she was unaware of the order before she traveled to a conference in Las Vegas.

The judge earlier revoked bond and issued the warrant for Peters, who is accused of tampering with voting equipment, after District Attorney Dan Rubinstein said in the documents that he had learned she traveled to Nevada for a conference after she sent a letter notarized in Las Vegas on Tuesday.

The letter, sent to Democratic Secretary of State Jena Griswold, requested a recount in her failed primary election bid for the GOP nomination in the state secretary of state’s race.

Rubinstein, a Republican, had previously said he would not object to Peters traveling outside of Colorado during her campaign for secretary of state. But the election was held June 28, and the the court documents said the letter was notarized on July 12. Judge Matthew Barrett issued an order Monday that Peters not travel until the post-election approval process for her travel was resolved.

In a court filing Thursday, Peters’ lawyer, Harvey Steinberg, said he did not learn about the order in time to warn Peters about it before she left for Las Vegas earlier this week.

She did not try to conceal her appearance at the conference, which was livestreamed, he said. In addition, Steinberg said Peters is still a candidate for the secretary of state, noting that the election results have not been certified yet.

Peters has echoed former President Donald Trump’s false theories about the 2020 election. She and her chief deputy, Belinda Knisley, are being prosecuted for allegedly allowing a copy of a hard drive to be made during an update of election equipment in May 2021. A former employee in her office, Sandra Brown, was arrested this week and is now also accused of being part of the scheme.

Peters is charged with three counts of attempting to influence a public servant, criminal impersonation, two counts of conspiracy to commit criminal impersonation, one count of identity theft, first-degree official misconduct, violation of duty and failing to comply with the secretary of state.

Both Peters and Knisley have denied wrongdoing, with Peters calling the charges politically motivated.

Brown, the former elections manager in Peter’s office, was charged Thursday with an attempt to influence a public servant, criminal impersonation, and conspiracy to commit criminal impersonation.

According to a court document, Knisley worked to get a security badge for a man Peters said she was hiring in the clerk’s office. Peters then used it to allow another, unauthorized person inside the room to make a copy of the election equipment hard drive, it said. Brown was present when the copy was made and conspired to misrepresent who the person using the badge was, it said.

Efforts to reach Brown for comment were unsuccessful via phone numbers that may be associated with her. Court records did not list an attorney who could speak on her behalf.

Mesa County, in western Colorado, is largely rural and heavily Republican. Trump won it in the 2020 presidential election with nearly 63% of the vote. President Joe Biden won Colorado overall with 55.4% of the state’s vote.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Olivia Newton-John attends 2018 G'Day USA Los Angeles Black Tie Gala at InterContinental Los Angele...
Associated Press

‘Grease’ star, Grammy winner Olivia Newton-John dies at age 73

Olivia Newton-John, the Grammy-winning superstar who played Sandy in the blockbuster film version of “Grease,” died at age 73 on Monday,
19 hours ago
Associated Press

Rains in S. Korea turn Seoul’s roads to rivers, leave 7 dead

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Heavy rains drenched South Korea’s capital region, turning the streets of Seoul’s affluent Gangnam district into a river, leaving submerged vehicles and overwhelming public transport systems. At least seven people were killed and six others were missing. Commuters were slowly returning to work Tuesday morning after emergency crews worked overnight […]
19 hours ago
Associated Press

Appeals court restores death sentence for family’s death

HOUSTON (AP) — A federal appeals court on Monday restored the death sentence of a bank robber convicted of killing his best friend, his friend’s fiancée and their three children. In a 32-page opinion, a three-judge panel of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals overturned a lower court ruling that would have freed Ronald […]
19 hours ago
FILE - Greg McMichael looks at the gallery during the testimony of his son, Travis McMichael, in th...
Associated Press

Father and son get life for hate crime in Ahmaud Arbery’s fatal shooting

The father and son convicted of murder in Ahmaud Arbery’s fatal shooting were sentenced to life in prison for committing a federal hate crime.
19 hours ago
Associated Press

Trump’s pick overtakes GOP House member who voted to impeach

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — Republican Joe Kent, who challenged incumbent Republican Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler over her vote to impeach former President Donald Trump, has taken a narrow lead in the race for the second spot in Washington state’s top two primary. Under the state’s primary system, all candidates run on the same ballot, and […]
19 hours ago
Colombian President Gustavo Petro gives a joint press conference with Chile's President Gabriel Bor...
Associated Press

Colombia’s leftist president presents ambitious tax plan

BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) — Colombia’s first leftist president presented an ambitious tax plan on Monday that aims to raise up to $11 billion a year for anti-poverty programs. Gustavo Petro was sworn into office on Sunday, and has promised to fight economic inequality while investing in rural areas that have long been haunted by drug-related […]
19 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Mayo Clinic Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

Why your student-athlete’s physical should be conducted by a sports medicine specialist

Dr. Anastasi from Mayo Clinic Orthopedics and Sports Medicine in Tempe answers some of the most common questions.
...
Carla Berg, MHS, Deputy Director, Public Health Services, Arizona Department of Health Services

Vaccines are safe if you are pregnant or breastfeeding

Are you pregnant? Do you have a friend or loved one who’s expecting?
...
Carla Berg, MHS, Deputy Director, Public Health Services, Arizona Department of Health Services

Update your child’s vaccines before kindergarten

So, your little one starts kindergarten soon. How exciting! You still have a few months before the school year starts, so now’s the time to make sure students-to-be have the vaccines needed to stay safe as they head into a new chapter of life.
Arrest sought of Colorado clerk in voting tampering case