A Black Lives Matter activist sentenced to prison earlier this year after being convicted of illegal voter registration had her criminal charges dropped and will no longer face a new trial, a district attorney said on Friday.

Pamela Moses, 44, described by some outlets as the founder of a BLM chapter in Memphis, was sentenced in January to six years and one day after being convicted of illegally registering to vote in Tennessee as a convicted felon. Moses had felony convictions in 2015, making her ineligible to register to vote.

“Moses will not be tried a second time on the felony charge of illegally registering to vote,” Shelby County District Attorney Amy Weirich said in an April 22 statement. In all, Moses has “spent 82 days in custody … which is sufficient,” she added.

The activist has been acquitted of all charges and prosecutors dismissed her illegal voter registration case and probation violations “in the interest of judicial economy,” the district attorney said.

Mark Ward, a judge in Shelby County who handed down Moses’s prison sentence, ordered a new trial—which now won’t take place—because the Tennessee Department of Correction failed to turn over a key piece of evidence that supported Moses’s defense.

Moses had claimed to be unaware that she was ineligible to vote and had faulted officials for not telling her about her ineligibility after she began probation on the 2015 charges.

According to an email that was never presented in court, the probation department mistakenly signed a form in September 2019 that cleared Moses’s voting rights.

The Tennessee Department of Correction determined two days later that it was an oversight by the service. The agency said the probation officer—referred to as Manager Billington—had to search with more care to find additional documents that indicated Moses was actually still on probation and not able to register to vote.

The focus of the case was whether Moses had knowingly voted while being aware she was actually ineligible. She said at her sentencing hearing in January she “did not falsify anything” and was just trying to get her “rights to vote back the way the people at the election commission” had told her.

Mayoral contenders Pamela Moses (2nd L) and Lemichael Wilson attend a May Day Rally outside City Hall in Memphis, Tenn., on May 1, 2019. (Jim Weber/Daily Memphian via AP)

“I relied on the election commission because those are the people who were supposed to know what you’re supposed to do,” Moses told News Channel 3 in December 2021.

Ward said during that same hearing that Moses made false statements to the probation department to register to vote and cast six illegal votes before being caught.

“You tricked the probation department into giving you documents saying you were off probation,” Ward said at the time. “After you were convicted of a felony in 2015, you voted six times as a convicted felon.”

In 2015, Moses pleaded guilty to felony charges of tampering with evidence and forgery. She also pleaded guilty to misdemeanor charges of perjury, stalking, and theft under $500, according to reports. She was placed on probation for seven years after pleading guilty to the felonies and misdemeanors.

From NTD News

Lorenz Duchamps


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