© Reuters. FILE PHOTO – A man votes on Election Day in Harlem, New York
By Keith Coffman
DENVER (Reuters) – A Colorado radio host who once chaired the state’s Republican Party and accused Democrats of widespread voter fraud has been charged with forging his ex-wife’s signature on a mail-in ballot in the 2016 election. , according to court records on Wednesday.
Steven Curtis, 57, who served as state Republican chief from 1997 to 1999, is charged with a felony forgery and a misdemeanor of tampering with a mail ballot, according to a criminal complaint filed in U.S. District Court. Weld County.
The case stems from an investigation filed with the Weld County Clerk and Recorder’s Office by Curtis’s former spouse, Kelly Ireland, who contacted the agency in October to verify the status of her voter registration after the couple separated.
Ireland was then informed that a signed ballot had already been mailed with her name and voter information, according to Carly Koppes, an elected Republican who serves as county clerk.
“At that time, my office investigated the situation further and the signature was questionable, so we contacted the District Attorney’s Office to start an investigation,” Koppes told Reuters.
If convicted, Curtis faces a maximum of three years in prison for forgery and up to 18 months in prison and a $ 5,000 fine for tampering with the ballots, said Tyler Hill, a spokesman for the district attorney.
Curtis’s attorney, Christopher Gregory, declined to comment.
The former Republican Party chief hosts a morning political talk show on Denver’s conservative radio station KLZ-AM called “Wake Up With Steve Curtis.”
Curtis spoke about election rigging in a segment titled “Voter Fraud and Other Democratic Misconduct” in his October 6, 2016 broadcast.
“I think so, and correct me if I’m wrong, but virtually every case of voter fraud that I can remember in my life was committed by Democrats,” Cutis said, according to a podcast archived on the station’s website.
Prosecutors allege that weeks after that broadcast, he falsified his ex-wife’s ballot.
A spokeswoman for Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams said the Curtis case is the only allegation of voter fraud in the state since the 2016 election cycle that resulted in prosecution.
Curtis made his first appearance in court on Tuesday where he was informed of the charges. A disposition hearing has been set for May, the District Attorney’s Office said.
Republican President Donald Trump has claimed, without presenting evidence, that millions of illegal voters voted in the 2016 election.
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