Late Friday night a jury convicted former Eatonville Mayor Anthony Grant of felony voting fraud, and other misdemeanor absentee-voting violations. Grant was found not guilty of two other charges involving former campaign aides James Randolph and Mia Nowells.
Nowells was found guilty of coercing a voter to vote for Grant, but acquitted of three other charges she faced. Randolph was found not guilty.
Grant served as mayor of the township for fifteen years, from 1994 to 2009, when he lost his seat to Bruce Mount, Sr.
Six years later, in 2015, Grant ran for the seat again and beat out Mount despite garnering fewer votes at the polls because he received 169 absentee votes to Mount’s 69. But Mount cried foul, saying a large number of Grant’s absentee ballots were forged.
Mount, represented by his son, attorney Bruce Mount, Jr., filed suit within the prescribed ten days after results were in.
The jury found that at least one of the persons who voted in the election was not a resident of Eatonville at the time and that Grant should have known she did not live in Eatonville when he went to her Rosemont apartment to take her a form to use in requesting an absentee ballot.
A spokesperson for State Attorney Aramis Ayala said: “We are pleased with the jury’s verdict. These cases are important to maintaining the community’s trust in our voting process.”
Grant could be facing as many as 40 years in prison.