Still no answers into registrar’s office investigation

Published 11:30 am Wednesday, February 8, 2023

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The week of February 15 marks a year since the Board of Supervisors (BOS) requested an investigation by the Virginia State Police (VSP) into the County’s Voter Registrar’s Office following multiple issues between 2020 and 2021.

Still, no questions have been answered, and county officials have received no status or reasoning for the holdup.

“The Virginia State Police Bureau of Criminal Investigations Appomattox Field Office is investigating an allegation made against the office of the Charlotte County Voter Registrar. That investigation remains ongoing at this time.” Corinne Geller, VSP Public Relations Director, said on Tuesday.

Geller did not clarify why there seems to be a holdup in the investigation.

County Administrator Dan Witt, Current Registrar Jenni Booth, and Electoral Board Chairman Glenn Baker all said they had not received any updates on the investigation.

After over a year of questions and concerns about the duties performed by the former county Registrar Eric Goode and his office, the BOS sought answers.

After their request on Feb. 14, 2021, the day following Feb. 15, Booth was named the county’s new Registrar.

In an interview last May, Witt said computers taken from the office had still not been returned and that requests for information have been vague.

Issues involving the former Registrar and his office came to light following a protective order Goode took out on electoral board member Dean Foster in November 2020

Goode, who served as Registrar since the fall of 2020 following the retirement of Nan Lambert, took out a protective order against Foster in November 2020 after he said Foster followed him when he left his office on several occasions.

Following a show-cause court case between him and Foster, Goode resigned.

In his resignation letter, Goode wrote that he was being forced out of a job and denied any wrongdoing while serving as voter registrar.

Since his resignation, there have been allegations of office mismanagement and missing absentee ballots from the November 2020 election.

The concerns over office mismanagement lead the electoral board to relocate the Registrar’s office for three months.

The concerns over the Registrar’s office and practices had become such an issue over that year that five citizens from the Randolph and Saxe area filed a lawsuit naming the county’s Voter Registrar, Board of Supervisors and the Virginia Department of Elections as defendants.

On Feb. 9, 2021, a judge dismissed the case.