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Board of Registrar member accused of taping voter information to aid candidates, harm others

Election in United States of America. Voter holds envelope in hand above vote ballot. USA flags in background. Democracy concept.

An ethics complaint was filed against a county board of registrar member in February after it was allegedly discovered that he was using his personal computer to tap into voting records.

According to the ethics filing obtained by APR, Autauga County Board of Registrars’ Keith Kuzma, on several occasions, was witnessed linking his laptop directly to the voter database to allegedly remove closely guarded voter information and use it in support of a particular candidate.

In a sworn statement by Brannon Booth, a former member of the Autauga County Board of Registrars, Kuzma used, “his position on the ACBR to influence the outcome of Autauga County elections in order to gain favor with particular candidates, retaliate against particular candidates, retaliate against Autauga County Elected Officials and retaliate against other members of the ACBR.”

The ethics complaint also holds that between October of 2015 and November 2016 then-Board Chair Carl Poteat believed that Kuzma deleted information from the Registrar’s database in retaliation against the Prattville Mayor.

Kuzma, appointed to the board shortly before the 2014 general election, also made headlines when he was arrested for physically attacking current Autauga County Probate Judge Alfred Booth outside an Autauga County Republican Executive Meeting.

According to the Montgomery Advertiser, the altercation occurred when Kuzma attempted to attend an Autauga County Republican Party Executive Meeting on Feb. 22 at St Joseph Catholic Church, which Booth claimed was against Republican Party by-laws.

The dust-up is based on the fact that Judge Booth is running to represent House District 88 against Kuzma’s candidate, William Dismukes, according to The Advertiser.

The ethics complaint also holds that between October of 2015, and November 2016, then-Board Chair Carl Poteat believed that Kuzma deleted information from the Registrar’s database in retaliation against the Prattville mayor.


Photos of Kuzma’s personal laptop allegedly linked top Registrar’s computer. (Contributed)


“Carl [Poteat] shared an interesting fact concerning the Street Files Database and how he believed the Respondent [Kuzma] deleted them in order to retaliate against Prattville’s Mayor Bill Gillespie,” according to the ethics complaint.

But this is not the only instance of Kuzma using his position on the board to assist favored candidates according to the complaint. “In January 2016 until around March 1st, Carl[Poteat] and I witnessed Respondent’s [Kuzma] overtly active involvement and support for two candidates for Autauga County Commission, Donald Meeks, and Larry Stoudemire. So much so that candidates were calling Respondent on his personal cell phone at the A[C]BR’s office on election day asking for information about how to run their campaigns.”

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According to the filing, Kuzma would help one candidate with poll workers and information while withholding information about polls from others.

The complaint also provides pictures of Kuzma’s personal computer plugged into the state’s desktop that links to crucial voter information for the county.

There are further allegations of Kuzma’s politicking while at the Autauga County Board of Registrars’ office. Also charges of harassment and intimidation are listed in the ethics complaints, as well.

As all ethics complaints are considered restricted information, no information about the state of the filing is known at this time.

 

Written By

Bill Britt is editor-in-chief at the Alabama Political Reporter and host of The Voice of Alabama Politics. You can email him at [email protected] or follow him on Twitter.

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