Baker County sheriff case still up in the air

Election abnormalities prompted Tim Williamson to bring a lawsuit against Sheriff Meade and the Baker County Elections Office.

/ Sean Streicher

The July 31st primary saw no majority winner in the Baker County Sheriff election, forcing a runoff between current sheriff Dana Meade and challenger Tim Williamson. Meade came out victorious by a 39 vote margin, but Williamson is calling a foul.

"Before the primary I had people contact me about abnormalities and stuff that was going on and after the election again people kept on contacting me, and I just felt like, I did not think that the election", said challenger Tim Williamson, while he was on the stand.

These abnormalities prompted Williamson to bring a lawsuit against Sheriff Meade and the Baker County Elections Office.

Williamson's lawyer, Jimmy Skipper, questioned witness after witness about receiving money and alcohol in exchange for voting for Meade.

Skipper: "Did she tell you who you were going to get paid to vote for?"

Witness 1: "Yes she did"

Skipper: "And who was that?"

Witness 1: "Dana"

Skipper: "Dana Meade?"

Witness 1: "Yes sir."

That was the only witness that said outright, he was paid to vote for Meade, all other witnesses, said they received gas money to go to the polls or alcohol for reasons not specified.

Also in question was the validity of certain votes and absentee ballots in which people with disabilities received help voting by individuals not authorized to do so.

It's now up to the judge to decide on one of three possible outcomes.

"He could ether award the election outright to Tim and say Tim won the election or, he could say the results are in such doubt because of all the evidence we presented that I'm just going to make you all have a new election", said Jimmy Skipper, who represented Williamson.

The third would be no change at all, with Sheriff Meade continuing in his role as Sheriff.

Judge Loring Gray, who presided over the case, said it's going to be about a week before he announces his final decision.

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