By NEMS Daily Journal
ASHLAND – A seven-day jury trial has ended with a guilty verdict in two Benton County voter fraud cases.
The decision was reached Monday against Clinton Moffitt, 30, of Hickory Flat and Ada Moore Tucker, 50, of Ashland before Circuit Judge Andrew K. Howorth.
The jury found both defendants guilty of one count of conspiracy to commit voter fraud and not guilty of one count each of voter fraud. The charges involved vote-buying.
“I was proud of the Benton County jury for standing up against vote buying,” said Attorney General Jim Hood as he announced the verdict. “I’m just sorry the defendants put the members of the jury in that position. Hopefully, these convictions will send the message that Benton Countians will not tolerate vote buying.”
Howorth delayed sentencing after a request for a pre-sentencing investigation by the defense. Moffitt and Tucker both face a maximum sentence of five years behind bars.
Sentencing for both defendants is scheduled for July 14 in Ashland.
These two cases are the latest of 16 indictments filed in March 2008 alleging voter fraud in the Aug. 7, 2007, primary election.
Three other defendants – Lillie Jean Norton, 59, of Ashland; Larry “Tip” Massey, 42, of New Albany, and Henry Massey, 42, of Hickory Flat – pleaded guilty in October 2008 to one count each of conspiracy to commit voter fraud before Circuit Judge Henry Lackey.
The cases are being prosecuted by the Public Integrity Division of the Attorney General’s Office.