Woman in vote fraud case seeking plea bargain

May 9, 2013

A Madisonville woman charged with eight counts of illegal voting over three elections is seeking a plea bargain with the Hamilton County prosecutor's office.

Melowese Richardson, 58, who was a poll worker at the Madisonville Recreation Center's polling place last fall, appeared in Hamilton County Common Pleas Court Thursday morning, where her lawyer, William Gallagher told Judge Robert Ruehlman that he was negotiating plea agreement.

Ruehlman set a May 28 hearing date for Richardson. If no plea agreement is presented to the court then, Ruehlmann will set a trial date for the case.

A long-time poll worker, Richardson is accused of illegally casting absentee ballots for herself and some friends and family members. Six of the cases are alleged to have happened in the November 2012 election. The other two charges stem from elections in 2008 and 2011

Assistant Hamilton County prosecutor Bill Anderson told WVXU Thursday that talks with Richardson's attorneys on a plea deal are "on-going."

"We are talking in order to resolve the situation without going to trial,'' Anderson said. "My hope is that we could reach an agreement by May 28."

Richardson is one of six person indicted so far on charges of illegal voting in connection with a wide-ranging investigation that began with the Hamilton County Board of Elections.