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Supporters of Sen. John Morse call for criminal investigation of petitions

By: Jesse Paul jesse.paul@gazette.com
July 20, 2013 Updated: July 21, 2013 at 1:39 pm
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A group supporting Colorado Springs State Sen. John Morse is demanding a criminal investigation into thousands of signatures collected in a petition to recall him.

The group, A Whole Lot of People for John Morse, announced Saturday afternoon that they will present a packet of information outlining alleged forgeries and instances of perjury to Dan May, 4th Judicial District Attorney.

"From what we can gather from all the material we have put together, there are thousands of signatures that have problems with them," said Christy Le Lait, spokeswoman for the pro-Morse group. "It was perjury from the circulator or perjury in the names that they forged."

The packet includes information that indicates that many petition signatures, as many as 2,100, included voters who live outside of Senate District 11, were not properly notarized, and some that were forged, Le Lait said. The group also said it has sworn affidavits from voters in District 11 saying they did not sign the petition despite their signatures being found on the recall.

"The complaint indicated that many of the recall effort's top petition gatherers appear to have committed perjury and forgery, including three who were likely employed by Kennedy Enterprises, who together collected more than 3,000 signatures," the group said.

"Have we found them (suspicious signatures) all? No, we haven't found them all," Le Lait said. "We felt it was time to get this over to the district attorney."

"The evidence that I have provided the district attorney's office calls into question the validity of the entire petition gathering process," Le Lait said. "There should be a swift and thorough investigation."

This latest announcement comes weeks after A Whole Lot of People for John Morse announced that they had first uncovered instances of forgery and perjury in the petition, including the signature of one woman who died two years ago. A Denver district judge last week ruled that the recall could go forward and Gov. John Hickenlooper set the election for Sept. 10.

Morse, a Democrat, drew widespread criticism following his support of stricter gun-control laws that passed during the 2013 legislative session.

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Contact Jesse Paul at 636-0253. Twitter: @JesseAPaul

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