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Authorities investigate potential voter fraud in Lawrence municipal election

The office of Secretary of State William F. Galvin referred the allegation of voter fraud to the Essex District Attorney's office.Pat Greenhouse/Globe Staff

Authorities are investigating potential voter fraud in Lawrence’s municipal election last week after a resident went to the polls to cast a ballot and was told they had already voted by mail, officials said Wednesday.

Secretary of State William F. Galvin’s office learned of the allegation and referred it to the Essex District Attorney’s office “for further investigation and prosecution,” according to Debra O’Malley, a spokesperson for Galvin.

“Our Elections Division has also been in touch with local law enforcement and the Lawrence Elections Division to ensure that any investigatory materials are secured,” O’Malley said in an email.

In a letter to District Attorney Paul F. Tucker, Michelle K. Tassinari, director and legal counsel for the secretary of state’s Elections Division, said the office had “received a report that a voter, who went to vote in person on Election Day, was already marked on the list as having voted by mail, which the voter disputed.”


“As a result, the voter reviewed video footage from their home which appears to show a person removing a ballot from a voter’s mailbox,” Tassinari continued. “The voter has stated they did not request a ballot be mailed to them and did not return any ballot.”

A spokesperson for Tucker said his office received the referral, and State Police assigned to the district attorney’s office are investigating.

Lawrence police did not respond to inquiries. The Lawrence mayor’s office had no comment.

Jeremy C. Fox can be reached at Follow him @jeremycfox.