Investigation launched into apparent tobacco petition fraud in Inyo County

By: 
Register Staff
Staff Writer

Kammi Foote, the Inyo County Clerk/Recorder and Registrar of Voters, would like to inform the public that it has received a statewide petition with a high level of Inyo County residents’ signatures that do not match county records. The petition is being referred to the Inyo County District Attorney’s Office. Anyone contacted in the course of an investigation is strongly encouraged to fully cooperate with investigators.

The petition is regarding the California law banning the sale of flavored tobacco.

Foote told one media outlet that at least 70% of the signatures are invalid, with dozens of voters saying they never signed the petition.

Foote noted the integrity of this basic constitutional right for citizens to petition government is taken very seriously by the Inyo County Clerk/Recorder and Registrar of Voters Office. Every petition signature is reviewed for authenticity against the Inyo County voter database of signatures, just as is every election ballot envelope signature.

This is not the first time the Inyo County Clerk/Recorder and Registrar of Voters Office has identified fraudulent signatures. Previous offenders have been sentenced with jail time and probation.

Please contact the Inyo County Clerk/Recorder and Registrar of Voters office at (760) 878-0224 with questions.

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