Thursday, November 19th, 2020

2 voters, same name - there was no voter fraud

By William Kincaid
CELINA - Despite an earlier concern, authorities have determined that no voter fraud was committed during the presidential election in Mercer County.
Mercer County Board of Elections directors at Tuesday's regular meeting reported that a woman may have attempted to vote twice during the 2020 presidential election cycle, once in Mahoning County and once in Mercer County.
Board members agreed to launch a criminal investigation into the matter, as state law prohibits any person from voting or attempting to vote more than once at the same election. Such a violation would be a fourth-degree felony.
Turns out, the votes were in fact cast by two different voters, a sheriff's office investigation concluded on Wednesday, according to a board of elections news release.
"The Board of Elections can now report that the investigation revealed that there was no voter fraud. The investigation found two female voters who share the same first name, middle name and date of birth," the release states. "They have different last names and the sheriff's office has confirmed that they are, in fact, two different people, one living in Mercer County and one living in Mahoning County."
The board thanked the sheriff's office for conducting a swift and efficient investigation.
"The Board of Elections apologizes to all parties concerned and regrets any inconvenience caused," the release reads. "Finally, because of the importance of the integrity of all elections, the Board will continue to exercise due diligence and remain vigilant when reviewing all potential allegations of election fraud."
On Oct. 30, a woman who identified herself as Christina Houts of Celina tried to vote absentee in-person at the county courthouse, according to director Deb Sneddon and deputy director Kristi Rable.
The poll workers could not locate the woman's name in the county's poll book, which contains addresses and political affiliations of the county's registered voters. Therefore the woman was issued a provisional ballot, Rable said.
Upon further review, election officials came to believe that the person in question had previously voted absentee in-person under the name Christina Lloyd in Mahoning County on Oct. 27. The investigation cleared up the matter.
Additional online story on this date
CELINA - Health district staff are struggling to manage their time effectively as the ever-increasing workload caused by COVID-19 continues to pile on top of additional duties employees need to complete. [More]
Subscriber and paid stories on this date
CELINA - The Mercer County Sheriff's office in a social media post on Wednesday announced deputies will not make random traffic stops to determine if residents are breaking the curfew recently imposed by the governor.
COLDWATER - Inpatient emergency department volume continues to rise at Mercer County Community Hospital, with daily volumes estimated to have almost tripled compared with previous months.
$133,494 will be used to buy equipment
CELINA - Mercer County commissioners this week signed off on a request to buy $133,494.50 worth of equipment to help some county employees work remotely amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
WAPAKONETA - The final ballot count for Auglaize County was certified on Wednesday after board of elections members went through a final review of absentee ballots received after Election Day and provisional ballots.
MONTEZUMA - Council members during a brief meeting on Wednesday night discussed a resident's request for village employees to remove a tree in the village right-of-way.
NEW BREMEN - The school district's updated five-year forecast shows diminishing cash balances, which will need to be addressed, school board members learned on Wednesday.
Homans coming up big for Cardinals
After New Bremen battled back to tie Marion Local at 17 with three minutes left in the Division VI regional final, the Cardinals needed a defensive stand to force overtime.
NEW BREMEN - The New Bremen volleyball season came to an end Sunday in the state championship match, but two of the Cardinals' seniors aren't done playing together yet.
All-Northwest District Football Teams
The Ohio Prep Sportswriters Association released its All-Northwest District football honors list on Wednesday evening.
New Bremen coach Chris Schmidt was named the Division VII Coach of the Year for guiding the Cardinals to the state championship game.

In 47 years as a varsity football program, New Bremen had never won so much as regional championship.
The 2020 team roared past that benchmark tw
After a three-season hiatus. Coldwater is back in a state football championship game.
The 11-0 Cavaliers take on 11-0 New Middletown Springfield on Sunday at 5 p.m. at Fortress Obetz in the Division VI state championship game.
Computer Points In Review
  Three for three.
For last week's state semifinals we were down to two local teams (Coldwater and New Bremen) as well as one non-local WBL school (Van Wert). For this week's state championships, the same three teams are still alive.
It's been 20 years since Van Wert has played in a state football championship game, but the Cougars are going to get their chance on Sunday at noon when they play in the Division IV title game at Fortress Obetz against Mentor Lake Catholic.
  NOTE: Due to the recent order for a 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. curfew, the times for this weekend's state football championship games have been changed.
Division VII
New Bremen (9-2) vs. Warren JFK (9-2), 1:15 p.m.
2020 Division IV Volleyball State Runner-up
Season Results:
(25-4, 7-2 MAC)
Russia  W  3-0
Celina  W  3-0
Columbus Grove  W  3-0
Wapakoneta  W  3-0
Minster  W  3-0
Jackson Center  W