True The Vote: Unusual Surge of Absentee Ballots in Gwinnett County GA

  • by:
  • Source: UncoverDC
  • 09/19/2023

True the Vote (TTV) has allegedly found significant issues in Gwinnett County related to alleged ballot trafficking. "Unusually high ballot surges" were noted on Columbus Day weekend 2020. In video surveillance secured by TTV, ballot traffickers or mules were shown "casting multiple ballots" at various locations in the county, and there was an "inaccurate recording of ballot counts." There was also an "unexplained ballot bag exchange." 

Video surveillance and a March 10, 2022 complaint that TTV sent to Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger "in response to ballot trafficking in Georgia and other states across the country," was sent to UncoverDC on April 29, 2022. The video and letter will be publicly released at a later date, according to founder Catherine Engelbrecht. The amended complaint letter notes "a number of unusually high ballot surges" from ballot chain of custody records from the Gwinnett Voter Registration & Election location. The letter also gives a sample accounting of "individuals casting multiple ballots" with timestamps. True the Vote has copies of video surveillance from the location showing people depositing multiple ballots in the dropbox location in broad daylight while, in some cases, a poll worker and others stood nearby.

Beginning on July 6, 2021, TTV requested "video recordings created by security cameras used to surveil all ballot dropboxes in Gwinnett County for the November 2020 Election under the Georgia Open Records Law OCGA §50-18-70." The period requested was "for the absentee ballot voting period for the November 2020 General Election beginning when the boxes were opened in October through the election until dropbox security footage stopped recording." TTV also asked that the location and date of the recording be notated.

The Gwinnett County Public Records center replied on July 8, stating that the video would be ready by July 16, 2021, but then provided some of the footage on July 20, with a payment of $1,278.03 from TTV. However, once the hard drives were picked up, A November 3, 2021 letter to the Secretary of State from TTV states that surveillance videos "in five of the most active locations" are still missing. TTV had inquired about the missing footage on July 20 with no reply from the Public Records Office.  The missing locations, according to the November 3rd letter, were:

  • Bogan Park Community Recreation Center
  • Dacula Park Activity Building
  • Gwinnett City Board of Elections Building
  • George Pierce Park
  • Peachtree Corners Library

Notably, per the request, State Election Board Rule 183-1-14-0.6-.14, Sec 5 states:

"Video recordings of the dropbox locations must be retained by the county registrars for 30 days after the final certification of the election or until the conclusion of any contest involving an election on the ballot in the county jurisdiction, whichever is later and shall be made available to Secretary of State investigators upon request."

Additionally, records must be preserved for a period of twenty-two months from the date of a general, special, or primary election.

Rules for Preservation of Elections

Ballot Counts Were Inaccurate and Significantly Higher Than Usual

Subsequently, according to the March 10, 2022 letter, the missing surveillance video was located by the County. The findings are as follows:

  • "Unusually high ballot surges occurred, [peaking] on Columbus Day weekend 2020, specifically from Sunday, October 11 until the morning of October 12."
  • According to the chain of custody records, there was an inaccurate recording of ballot counts.
  • On Monday, Oct. 12, at 8:35 a.m., 1,962 ballots were collected, "a count significantly higher than any other day in the election cycle."

In addition, True the Vote's initial review of publicly available geospatial data showed "comparatively few cell phone devices were proximate to the dropbox during the period of time in which 1,962 ballots were deposited. Upon review of the video, only 270 individuals cast ballots during the time period in question, specifically 7:34 A.M. 10/11/2020 to 7:28 A.M. 10/12/2020 (note: the video reveals an interim ballot pick up Sunday, October 11th at 12:41 P.M. with no chain of custody)"

Pictured below is a screenshot from the complaint. It is a "sample of individuals casting multiple ballots" with timestamps. Approximately 101 individuals appear to be casting between "two and five ballots, as visible without magnification" in the surveillance footage:

March 10, 2022 TTV Complaint to GA SOS

The complaint proceeds to make a number of assertions about the alleged ballot trafficking operation in Gwinnett County. TTV's open records request revealed that the individuals casting the ballots were not "authorized assistors who had signed ballot envelopes confirming by oath they were legally authorized to assist in the casting ballots other than their own." TTV also identified the crossover of "two individuals" from the General Election period "who cast multiple ballots at the Gwinnett Voter Registration & Election location on this day in question."

Unexplained Ballot Bag Exchange

Finally, according to TTV, there was an unexplained ballot bag exchange:

"Timestamp shown at 7:28 A.M. on October 12th, 2020, we see two ballot collectors approach the dropbox and remove ballots. The bulk of the items removed seems to be consistent with the approximately 402 ballots we observed being deposited into the dropbox throughout the period. Then a third person appears. This person takes the bags of ballots from the collectors, gives them a different bag, and then leaves the scene. A third person was not listed on the chain of custody documents, and it is unclear who this person is or why they took this bag."

Georgia GOP Slams Raffensperger Over Irregularities in 2020 Election

Just as TTV was beginning in early December 2020 to question the election, so was the Georgia Republican Party. The United Tea Party of Georgia obtained a recording of an early December zoom call through "a Freedom of Information Act request." During the hour and seven-minute call, the members of the state's GOP confronted Georgia's Secretary of State about multiple concerning irregularities in the General Election. One of the counties highlighted with issues was Gwinnett. According to the United Tea Party's statement, "multiple members of the Republican executive board asking hard questions directly of the SOS (answered mainly by his attorney) that normal voters just couldn’t ask."

All state GOP members were adamant that there was a "crisis of confidence" from Georgia voters and brought up "example after example of election irregularities and evidence of fraudulent ballots cast, pleading with Secretary Raffensperger to immediately investigate." A press release referencing the zoom meeting from the Bartow County Republican Party is below. The zoom call and the letter indicate that the GOP was painfully aware of significant issues with the Georgia General Election as it prepared for the January 2021 Senatorial Run-off.

GOP slams Raffensperger/Barstow GOP FB Post

Gwinnett County was identified as a county that seemingly ignored public notice rules concerning counting procedures, allegedly ignored election procedures, and signature verification procedures. There were 120,000 signature verification signatures of the absentee ballots needing review in Gwinnett County alone. It is not clear they reviewed them pursuant to the Official Election Bulletin (OEB) requests sent by the Secretary of State. During the call, BJ Van Gundy said he believed that the proper signature verification procedures "were definitely ignored" given how they handled other election rules and procedures.

Notably, the state purchased "very expensive" signature verification software from Bluecrest. During the meeting, it was confirmed that it was not used in the General Election. Brad Carver, whose district includes "Fulton, Buckhead and a little bit of Sandy Springs," said Republican Commissioner Mark Wingate told him it was not used. Commissioner Liz Hausman allegedly told Carver that "actually, doing it by hand would be quicker."

However, as Carver stated in the call, a "manual review of signatures of 148,700 absentee ballots in Fulton County" would be almost impossible to do. Carver also spoke at length about the Susan Voyles affidavit and Carter Jones' account of the late-night activity involving "suitcases of ballots" at the State Farm Arena where reporters and observers were asked to depart, resulting in the alleged feeding of "pristine" ballots through tabulators without third party observation.

On the call were: State Party Chairman David Shafer, Seventh District Chairman Joel Natt, Georgia National Committeeman Jason Thompson, BJ Van Gundy, Assistant Secretary of the State party, Ginger Howard, National Committeewoman, Finance Chairman Shawn Still, Darrell Galloway, Brad Carver in the 11th District, District 14 Chairman, District 9 Chairman Rebecca Yardley, Georgia elections official Gabriel Sterling, SOS Brad Raffensperger, and his general counsel, Ryan Germany.

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