EYEWITNESS LOCAL NEWSLINCOLN COUNTY PRIMARY
from Eyewitness News Online
Some Problems Reported In Lincoln County; Several Close Races
Reported by: Kallie Cart
Videographer: John Tincher
Web Producer: Kallie Cart
Reported: May. 9, 2012 3:00 AM EDT
Hamlin , Lincoln County , West Virginia
Election fraud dominated the last primary election in Lincoln County. This time around, voters and candidates were calling for change, but the 2012 primary wasn't without problems.
Just before the stroke of midnight the races in Lincoln County were called.
A precinct failed to shut down one of the voting machines properly causing a the long delay in results. But many people waited throughout the night, outside a converted garage where they count the ballots, to find out who won some of the highly contested races on the democratic ballot.
In what was likely one of the most highly contested and high profiled races on the ballot, Ken Farly beat out three challengers for the democratic nomination for sheriff. Farley received 1,338 votes, Rick Saul received 1,095, Jesse Mullins received 750 and Rickey Wade received 214.
Farley, a coal miner a preacher and a former deputy, says he wants to turn the office around.
The last elected Sheriff, Jerry Bowman, resigned after pleading guilty to federal election fraud charges stemming from the 2010 primary.
"We want some honesty in Lincoln County and that's what our whole team is about," Farley says.
His republican challenger, Lisa Ramey, an occupational therapist for children wants the same.
"Hopefully this year will be the change that Lincoln County deserves and we can finally have a fair election," Ramey says. She ran unopposed for the republican nomination.
Lincoln County has a long history of election fraud including the last primary election, which resulted in two politicians being charged. There were some red flags this year.
The new County Clerk Myrle Gue says during early voting an alarming number of people asked for assistance while they voted, claiming they couldn't read or write.
Gue says the Secretary of State's Office was made aware of the issue and he will investigate to see if that trend continued on election day but adds there is progress in Lincoln County.
The other contested races include the race for county prosecuting attorney. James Gabehart beat Justin Marlow 2,116 to 1,065.
The race for County Assessor was close. Josh Brumfield narrowly beat incumbent Tracy Dempsey 1,813 to 1,677.
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