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No Counterfeit Ballots Found in Compton

November 21, 2001|JOHN L. MITCHELL | TIMES STAFF WRITER

An inspection of nearly 30,000 used and unused ballots in Compton's disputed mayoral election found no evidence of counterfeit ballots, both sides said Tuesday.

Superior Court Judge Judith Chirlin ordered the ballot examination last week to investigate the claim by ex-Mayor Omar Bradley that counterfeit ballots had been used in the June 5 election, which Deputy Dist. Atty. Eric Perrodin won by 281 votes.

During the inspection, Scott D. Martin, an election specialist, confirmed that all the ballots were genuine. His election supply firm, Martin & Chapman Co., of Anaheim, printed all the ballots.

Bradley Hertz, the attorney for the former mayor, conceded Tuesday that the inspection failed to find "the smoking gun": any counterfeit ballots.

But Hertz said he still plans to raise questions about whether any of the 2,500 spoiled ballots discarded during their printing might have made it into the Compton election.

Martin said all those ballots were too damaged to be used and were disposed of before the election. Hertz also questioned why some ballots cast had different serial numbers, came from different stocks of paper and were not uniform in color.

Bradley's civil suit against the city seeks to have the election results thrown out.

Testimony in that case began last week in Los Angeles Superior Court.

Attorney Bruce Gridley, an attorney for Compton, said he was confident that the judge would rule in their favor.

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