Southfield, Michigan clerk Sherikia Hawkins was bound over this week in Oakland County Circuit Court. The Democrat elected official is facing six felonies tied to the November 2018 election cycle. Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel defended the matter calling it a “rare” case and adding that “voting is fundamental to the very essence of our democracy,”
Sherikia Hawkins was recently honored by the Michigan Democrat Party with a special award. May 18th, at the Legacy Dinner in Detroit Hawkins was honored with the Dingell/Levin award. She was listed among the “40 under 40” by the Michigan Chronicle. She drew attention in the party by being the first black city clerk elected in Southfield. Hawkins had administered 16 different elections in Oakland County and held a “Master Municipal Cler” designation from the International Institute of Municipal Clerks.
“Sherikia takes pride in using unconventional methods to engage the community in voting,”International Institute of Municipal Clerks (https://www.iimc.com/)
Court documents allege that Hawkins altered at least 193 absentee voter records. She was first arraigned in September of 2019 in 46th District Court on election-law charges including falsifying records, forgery of a public record, misconduct in office, and multiple counts of using a computer to commit a crime. Forgery of a public record by itself is a 14 year offense. Computer records show that Hawkins computer and unique name made the alterations to public record.
An affidavit filed by the Michigan State Police investigator in charge of the complaint says the Oakland County Elections Director Joseph Rozell was working to certify results when he noticed that ballot summary sheets were blank, leading him to contact Hawkins directly, exposing the fraud.
Rozell says after he questioned Hawkins about the discrepancies int he ballot record sheet he said it appeared “the ballot return dates for voters were added or removed from the report in order to force the reports to balance to the number of ballots tabulated for each precinct on election night.
“It appears that Hawkins had switched her original reports with altered reports,”Michigan State Police Detectice Sgt. Larissa LaMay
Questions about the security of our election system have been coming up repeatedly in this state. Recently Jocelyn, Benson, the state’s Secretary of State sent out unprompted absentee ballots to everyone in the state. Officials and citizens were blown away by the move. Absentee voting is for voters who will be absent, not for everyone to adopt mail-in-voting. Reports even noted that many dead voters received applications.
All eyes will be on Election 2020. Stay tuned for more.