A Florida man was arrested on Thursday after he requested a vote-by-mail ballot for his late wife.
Larry Wiggins, 58, was arrested on Thursday by the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office.
According to information published by the sheriff’s office, Wiggins requested two vote-by-mail ballots from the Supervisor of Elections office, one for himself and one for his wife.
Election officials noticed the handwriting style and signatures on the ballot request don’t match the wife’s original voter registration. They found that the woman died in 2018 after further investigation.
The case was reported to the sheriff’s office afterward.
Wiggins later admitted he mailed in his deceased wife’s ballot request and told detectives that he was “testing the system to see if it worked.”
The Florida State Attorney’s Office reviewed this case and agreed to charge the suspect with Requesting Vote by Mail Ballot on Behalf of Another Elector, which is a third-degree felony. Wiggins could face up to $5,000 in fines and five years in prison.
Public voter records show Wiggins registered as a Democrat.
Attorney General William Barr said in early September that the Department of Justice (DOJ) is conducting a large number of voter fraud investigations.“I know there are a number of investigations right now, some very big ones, in states,” Barr said in response to a question about how many voter fraud indictments the DOJ has brought on his watch.
Barr said he did not know the exact number. At least 32 people have been criminally convicted of voter fraud in 2019, according to a database maintained by the conservative Heritage Foundation think tank.
The picture of the election this year is very different from 2016. More voters may vote by mail because of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) virus and the Democrats have encouraged a massive push for unsolicited mail-in ballots.
A record 1,012,211 voters have already cast early ballots in the 2020 election, according to data from 25 states tallied by the U.S. Elections Project.
The actual number is likely much higher because some states have yet to report their early voting totals, while others count early ballots on the local level, according to Michael McDonald, a University of Florida professor who maintains the data.
Around the same time during the 2016 election, only 9,525 voters had cast their ballots, according to McDonald.
Ivan Pentchoukov contributed to the report.