THE VILLAGES, Fla. – All four residents of The Villages charged with voting twice in the 2020 election have now admitted to the crime, court records show.
John Rider, 62, recently entered into a pre-trial intervention program that will allow him to avoid potential prison time if he successfully completes court-ordered requirements and refrains from violating the law.
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Rider acknowledged his guilt as part of the agreement with prosecutors.
“The Parties agree that the first step in rehabilitation is to the admission of his wrongdoing,” the contract states.
Rider indicated in court papers that he plans to “buy out” his requirement of completing 50 hours of community service at a cost of $10 per hour.
Three other residents of The Villages accused of voting twice signed similar pretrial intervention contracts last year.
All four were facing a maximum of five years in prison if a jury convicted them of a third-degree felony.
As part of their agreements with the state, Joan Halstead, Charles Barnes and Jay Ketcik were required to complete a 12-week adult civics class based on the textbook “We the People; the Citizen and the Constitution.”
Under the pretrial intervention contracts, prosecution of the defendants will be deferred for a period of 18 months, with the possibility that it will be permanently deferred if they successfully complete the court-ordered requirements.
Florida’s secretary of state first learned about three of the alleged double voting cases after receiving anonymous emails from a self-described “citizen election integrity analyst.”
That anonymous tipster, who uses the pseudonym “Totes Legit Votes”, provided Florida elections officials with 282 examples of potential double voting, a News 6 investigation uncovered.
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