Sharon L. Harrington, Lee County Supervisor of Elections, has asked the Lee County State Attorney's Office to investigate a possible case of voter fraud in Lee County.
In an attempt to garner information for his lawsuit for a recount, former Cape Coral mayor John Sullivan asked a private investigator to look into the voting activity of approximately 50 electors who voted in the 2013 Cape Coral municipal election. The investigator found two electors who voted in Lee County and in the 2013 Cape Coral municipal elections while residing in Charlotte County for the last six years.
Michelle Lee and William S. Lambrigger, witnesses for the plaintiffs in the Sullivan vs- Sawicki lawsuit, admitted in their depositions, through sworn statements, and on the witness stand, that they voted in elections in which they were no longer eligible to vote, the elections office said in a prepared statement released late Wednesday.
"Once I was made aware of this situation, I had the obligation, as the Supervisor of Elections, to take the necessary steps to report what I believed to be a blatant case of voter fraud," Harrington said in the statement. "The Lambrigger's had six years to contact the elections office in Charlotte County. In accordance with Florida Law, it is a voter's responsibility to keep his or her voter records up-to-date and current."
Sullivan lost the election to current mayor Marni Sawicki by 121 votes. The percentage difference was slightly higher than the .5 percent required to mandate an automatic recount. Sullivan, and a handful of supporters, contested the results, first asking for a court-ordered recount, then a new election, but lost in court with the judge ruling the suit was "meritless." She ordered Sullivan and the other plaintiffs to pay attorneys' fees for the defendants, which included Sawicki and Harrington.
Sullivan and his co-plaintiffs then filed for reconsideration, which also was denied by the same judge.