UPDATE: Butch Morgan and three others charged in ballot petition - Fox 28: South Bend, Elkhart IN News, Weather, Sports

UPDATE: Butch Morgan and three others charged in ballot petition case

Posted:
Owen "Butch" Morgan/Courtesy: St. Joseph County Sheriff's Department Owen "Butch" Morgan/Courtesy: St. Joseph County Sheriff's Department
Pam Brunette/Courtesy: St. Joseph County Sheriff's Dept. Pam Brunette/Courtesy: St. Joseph County Sheriff's Dept.
Dustin Blythe/Courtesy: St. Joseph County Sheriff's Dept. Dustin Blythe/Courtesy: St. Joseph County Sheriff's Dept.
Beverly D. Shelton/Courtesy: St. Joseph County Sheriff's Dept. Beverly D. Shelton/Courtesy: St. Joseph County Sheriff's Dept.

6:00 p.m. UPDATE: A FOX28 News crew saw Butch Morgan leaving the St. Joseph County Jail. The St. Joseph County Sheriff's Department says he was booked into the jail and immediately posted $10,000 cash bond.

All 4 charged in the case are expected in court on Tuesday at 1:00 p.m.

5:00 p.m. UPDATE: As of 5:00 p.m., the St. Joseph County Sheriff's Department says Pam Brunette, Beverly Shelton and Dustin Blythe have been booked into the St. Joseph County Jail. Brunette has posted an $8000 cash bond and Shelton a $6000 cash bond.

Lt. Matt Blank says an active arrest warrant is out for Butch Morgan.

Original Story: Charges have been filed in the ballot petition case that captured headlines last year.  The St. Joseph County Prosecutor's office says it "initiated a formal investigation into the alleged fraud of the submission of petitions containing the names of registered voters for the placement of candidates on the ballot for the United States President in the 2008 primary election."

The investigation lead to the charges against four people:

  • Owen "Butch" Morgan
  • Pam Brunette
  • Dustin Blythe
  • Beverly D. Shelton

According to an affidavit of complaint against Morgan a worker, Lucas Burkett, came forward in 2011 to meet with investigators.  The indictment says Burkett told authorities, "Owen Butch Morgan, Jr. instructed Mr. . Burkett, Pamela Brunette, Beverly Shelton, and Dustin Blythe to forge ballot petitions for presidential candidates.  Mr. Burkett said that all of them agreed to follow these instructions."

According to the affidavit "Mr. Burkett... decided that he could not participate in the scheme anymore, so he told his supervisor, Pamela Brunette, that he would no longer forge any signatures.  He said that Pamela Brunette was very upset and made him speak to Owen "Butch" Morgan, Jr. personally on the phone, and that Owen "Butch" Morgan, Jr. was also very upset with him."

We're told the investigation remains ongoing.  Stay with FOX 28 as we continue to gather more information on the charges. 

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