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Calls claiming voter fraud traced back to Michigan Conservative group

Posted at 7:31 PM, Nov 23, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-23 19:31:29-05
(WXYZ) —

Have you received a phone call telling you that you are a victim of voter fraud? That’s what one couple in Wyandotte say happened on Sunday morning.

Concerned it was an election scam, they called police and reached out to 7 Action News.

Since Election Day, there have been many ballot-related allegations, accusations and even threats. This couple didn’t want to reveal their full name out of concern they might become a target, but they wanted people to know about the concerning call.

“It’s just so scary," Elizabeth said. "And that’s why we wanted to report this story. If we got the call, who knows who else got the call."

Her husband actually received the call on his cell phone.

“They asked if I knew an Elizabeth and I said, 'it’s my wife,'" Elizabeth's husband recalled. "And they told me they were looking into potential voter fraud and asking if we requested a mail-in ballot. I just mentioned that we went early to our city hall and voted."

The female caller read off two addresses and asked if Elizabeth lived at those. Her husband confirmed one was a former address belonging to her parents and the other is her current address.

“She told me it looks like my wife was a victim of voter fraud," he said. "That it’s very terrible that she had voter fraud and that was it. She kind of just hung up."

Elizabeth said the way the caller hung up abruptly was concerning.

“So, no identification; no, here’s what she should do, just this is terrible... she’s a victim of voter fraud,” Elizabeth said. “And I think what bothered me at first the most is just for someone to have my full, middle and last name, both my addresses … and to tell him this is her address. That was the first red flag. Like, what if that wasn’t my husband that answered the phone?”

Elizabeth said she doesn’t understand why the caller said she was a victim of voter fraud or who she is. So she Google searched the phone number on the caller ID.

“And it showed up as a Republican delegate from Oakland County and we are voters in Wayne County and I thought that was odd,” Elizabeth said.

7 Action News Reporter Jennifer Ann Wilson called the number and confirmed that the woman was indeed a Republican delegate from Oakland County. She says she was volunteering with a group to help investigate voter fraud and refered us to the woman in charge.

Marian Sheridan ran a group of volunteers for the Michigan Conservative Coalition Operation Guard the Vote. The goal she says was to review all 51,000 first-time Wayne County voters who cast absentee ballots.

“What is all of a sudden 50,000 people that have never voted before... are they legitimate voters,” she asked.

Sheridan says when absentee ballot applications were sent by the state to every registered voter automatically, it created an opportunity for problems.

“Did that lead to people using these applications that really weren’t intended to use the applications,” Sheridan questioned.

She says her volunteer team found many concerning irregularities. The goal of the research and occasional phone calls was to assemble a report for the state board of canvassers meeting and for lawyers to review for potential further action.

Elizabeth is concerned about how her name and info will be used. She does not believe she is a victim of voter fraud and doesn’t want her name added to a list. 7 Action News reporter Jennifer Ann Wilson asked Sheridan if she was sure that the data her volunteers reviewed was accurate and if she believes discrepancies could be clerical errors instead of fraud. She said she doesn’t believe Michigan was ready for this volume of absentee voting and that creates room for problems.

“It takes states years and years to come up with good systems of mail in voting,” Sheridan said. “And you can not dump this kind of... voting throughout a state as big as Michigan, five months before a major election and not think that you’re going to have total chaos."

If you receive concerning communication about the election, contact police and give 7 Action News a call. We will get to the bottom of it.