Clark Co. (ECWd) –
Updated with video proof (at bottom) –
In keeping with the history of most electoral boards, the Clark County Electoral Board ruled today to keep all 10 candidates on the ballot for the Clark County Park District Commissioner race even though clear fatal defects were identified and admitted to.
The objections to those filings have generated quite a stir with some, and the most typical comment is that the citizens right to challenge petitions is petty. In fact, Larry Yargus stated this is was a waste of tax payer time and money. I guess he forgot he filed 5 objections himself.
Was it a waste of time and money?
The so called petty complaints about page numbers or failing to circle city or village are just a few items, that when not understood as a whole, tend to be considered trivial as it relates to the integrity of the electoral process, however, once understood, agree it is a serious matter…………except the electoral hearing board members.
Is Perjury a petty complaint? How about Forgery?
Those words bring a whole new light to the party and this so called petty process has now exposed some potentially troubling matters for Mr. Yargus and possibly others. Matters that would have never been detected without being placed under oath in a so called petty matter.
Many said he would lie about the matter when we discussed the facts we knew about. Contrary to those views, Mr. Yargus told the truth while under oath………on the stand. I commend him for that, however it appears based on that truthful testimony he has admitted to not being truthful with his circulated petitions, which under the election code could bring a Perjury charge and possible Forgery as it relates to current Forgery laws.
From the electoral code: (10 ILCS 5/29-10) (from Ch. 46, par. 29-10) Sec. 29-10. Perjury. (a) Any person who makes a false statement, material to the issue or point in question, which he does not believe to be true, in any affidavit, certificate or sworn oral declaration required by any provision of this Code shall be guilty of a Class 3 felony.
Larry Yargus signed his name on all his petition sheets which state, that the signatures on this sheet were signed in my presence, not more than 90 days preceding the last day for filing of the petitions and are genuine and that to the best of my knowledge and belief the persons so signing were at the time of signing the petition registered voters of the political division in which the candidate is seeking elective office, and that their respective residences are correctly stated, as above set forth . (Click here for a blank petition sheet with the above section highlighted)
He testified that he in fact DID NOT circulate all the petitions, but actually dropped off sheets at the school to be circulated. According to sources at the school, Ms. Higginbotham was the person circulating those particular petitions, not Mr. Yargus.
So if Mr. Yargus signed his name to a document claiming the signatures obtained on the sheet were done in his presence, that would be a lie and based on the election laws, constitutes perjury.
The second lie would be claiming to the best of his knowledge and belief the persons so signing were at the time of signing the petition registered voters of the political division in which the candidate is seeking elective office, and that their respective residences are correctly stated, as above set forth. A lie because he was not present upon their signing of those petitions. Hard to have knowledge and belief in persons signing when you weren’t even present.
From what many call a petty petition objection that is a waste of time and money, has actually been the mechanism necessary to expose what appears to be a criminal act. Without the objection hearing there would not have been any testimony. Without any testimony no one would have known Mr. Yargus was less than honest about his petition papers, outside of those that notified us.
Considering he knew he did not circulate those pages one must ask, what was the intent of not disclosing that? Was there intent to defraud? Why not have the actual person who circulated the petitions sign them? Is the reason the actual circulator didn’t sign them because they actually circulated the petitions on state property all while collecting a public salary? Nothing worse than electioneering on state property while on the taxpayer dime!
All things considered one must wonder, is there a case for forgery on top of perjury?
(720 ILCS 5/17-3) (from Ch. 38, par. 17-3)
Sec. 17-3. Forgery.
(a) A person commits forgery when, with intent to defraud, he or she knowingly:
(1) makes a false document or alters any document to make it false and that document is apparently capable of defrauding another; or
(2) issues or delivers such document knowing it to have been thus made or altered; or
(3) possesses, with intent to issue or deliver, any such document knowing it to have been thus made or altered; or
(4) unlawfully uses the digital signature, as defined in the Financial Institutions Electronic Documents and Digital Signature Act, of another; or
(5) unlawfully uses the signature device of another to create an electronic signature of that other person, as those terms are defined in the Electronic Commerce Security Act.
(c) A document apparently capable of defrauding another includes, but is not limited to, one by which any right, obligation or power with reference to any person or property may be created, transferred, altered or terminated. A document includes any record or electronic record as those terms are defined in the Electronic Commerce Security Act. For purposes of this Section, a document also includes a Universal Price Code Label or coin.
(c-5) For purposes of this Section, “false document” or “document that is false” includes, but is not limited to, a document whose contents are false in some material way, or that purports to have been made by another or at another time, or with different provisions, or by authority of one who did not give such authority.
(1) Except as provided in paragraphs (2) and (3), forgery is a Class 3 felony.
(2) Forgery is a Class 4 felony when only one Universal Price Code Label is forged.
(3) Forgery is a Class A misdemeanor when an academic degree or coin is forged.
(e) It is not a violation of this Section if a false academic degree explicitly states “for novelty purposes only”.
(Source: P.A. 96-1551, eff. 7-1-11; 97-231, eff. 1-1-12; 97-1109, eff. 1-1-13.)
Facts: By all indications, the evidence presented today appear to support at least 3 of the 5 criteria, of which any single one constitutes Forgery!
- He signed his name on a document claiming to have witnessed the signatures when in fact he did not, thus making that document capable of defrauding another.In this case, defrauding the voters from the truth about his petitions.
- He issued or delivered the document KNOWING it to have been false, and finally,
- he possessed, with intent to issue or deliver a document that he KNEW was not true!
There are more than enough grounds for a criminal investigation on this matter by both law enforcement and the State Board of Elections for perjury, forgery, and electioneering on state property while on the public dime.
Suggestion to Mr. Yargus:
Save everyone a whole lot of work and do the right thing! Withdraw your petition to be placed on the ballot because you know you did not circulate the petitions you claimed to have circulated. If you were to do the right thing and throw out those particular pages then you failed to secure enough signatures, thus not allowed on the ballot!
Other concerns for Mr. Yargus:
(10 ILCS 5/29-12)
(from Ch. 46, par. 29-12)
Disregard of Election Code.
Yes, he did finally admit it, and it took almost 13 minutes of questioning under oath to drag it out of him!