March 27, 2023

Dawson County Journal

Dawson County, Nebraska

Lawmaker on the ballot accused of lying about her residence

BOULDER COUNTY, Colo. — A Colorado state representative is accused of lying about where she lives, using the false address both to vote in the primary and to run for re-election.

Rep. Tracey Bernett, a Democrat, remains on the ballot for House District 12 despite investigators’ findings that she no longer lives in the district, according to the 20th Judicial District Attorney’s Office.

“Based on the facts and the law, we will now move forward with a criminal prosecution. As in
every case, our goal is to seek the right outcome – without fear or favor,” DA Michael Dougherty said in a statement.

Lawmaker rented apartment in her old district

Bernett has represented House District 12 since 2020, but last year’s redistricting moved her home address to House District 19.

The district attorney’s office alleges Bernett rented an apartment in Louisville to stay in HD-12 under the redrawn boundaries, and she falsely reported the address as her primary residence over a nine-month period.

They say she used the address to cast a vote in the primary election and to file sworn documents with the Secretary of State’s Office in her re-election campaign.

By the time investigators began to look into the case, ballots had already been printed. The Boulder County Clerk and Recorder’s Office said at the time “that mailed ballots would
include her name as a candidate regardless of the outcome of this investigation,” according to the DA’s office.

The DA’s office said it took a number of steps to make its case including, witness interviews, search warrants and cell phone location data. Bernett faces the following charges:

  • Attempt to influence a public servant (Class 4 felony)
  • Forgery (Class 5 felony)
  • Residence — false information (Class 5 felony)
  • Perjury (Class 2 misdemeanor)
  • Procuring false registration (Class 2 misdemeanor)

Bernett surrendered and posted a $10,000 bond on Friday, court records show. She is due back in court on Nov. 17.

Source: Rocky Mountain News