IBJNews

Trial of Indiana secretary of state gets under way

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

Indiana's top elections official signed documents showing he was living at an address different than one he listed on voting records, witnesses testified Tuesday as prosecutors began building their case in a trial that could cost Secretary of State Charlie White his job and his freedom.

White faces charges of fraud, perjury and theft. A conviction on even one of the seven felony counts would force his removal from the politically powerful office.

As the trial began, defense attorney Carl Brizzi tried to sow doubt in jurors' minds that White is guilty of any of the charges.

Special prosecutor Dan Sigler Sr. brought in a cart with 11 boxes of evidence, including key cellphone records that he said in his opening argument would show White wasn't living in the address on his voting records.

Prosecutors claim White used his ex-wife's address on his voter registration form in the May 2010 Republican primary when he actually had a condo elsewhere with his fiancee. They also allege he collected his $1,000-per-month Fishers Town Council salary after moving out of that district.

"This case is about deceit and cheating," Sigler told jurors at the Hamilton County Courthouse in the Noblesville, about 20 miles north of Indianapolis. "Somebody tried to get away with something. ... Somebody got caught."

But Brizzi told jurors there was no evidence anyone was harmed or that he was ineligible to vote.

"Their entire case is based on supposition and innuendo," Brizzi told jurors during his opening argument. "You're not going to be convinced of anything beyond a reasonable doubt except that they want to get him."

The state's first four witnesses were a human resources officer at an Indianapolis law firm White went to work for in 2010 and the sales agent, builder and mortgage closing officer involved in his purchase of the condo that year. They testified that White listed the home located well outside his council district as his primary residence on employment and loan documents or that they saw him arriving or leaving there.

Brizzi tried to poke holes in the state's case, asking the witnesses if prosecutors had asked them to lie or if they had made up any of their testimony. Sales agent Tammi Kaeser testified she understood White was going to move into the town home in November 2009 — long before White changed his address on voting records — but did not know for a fact whether he did or simply let his future wife, Michelle, live there with her children.

"I'm not sure who moved in on the 13th," Kaeser said under cross-examination.

Sigler and fellow special prosecutor John Dowd used the witnesses to enter more than 25 documents central to their case that jurors were able to examine in the courtroom and jury room.

White, 42, has said the charges he faces ignore a complicated personal life in which he was trying to raise his 10-year-old son, plan his second marriage in May 2010 and campaign for the statewide office he won that November. He said he stayed at his ex-wife's house when he wasn't on the road campaigning and did not live in the condo until after his remarriage.

Prosecutors are expected to conclude their case Thursday.

White has resisted calls to resign from Democrats and Republicans, including Gov. Mitch Daniels.

A Marion County judge already has ruled that White should be ousted, but that decision has been appealed.

The same judge also said White should be replaced by Vop Osili, the Democrat he defeated in the November 2010 election by about 300,000 votes. But state law calls for Daniels to appoint a successor.

ADVERTISEMENT

  • Caught One
    We finally caught a person who committed voter fraud, only to find out he is White.
  • Whewwww!
    Good thing the Republicrat legislature passed
    those voter fraud measures a few years ago.
    We finally caught somebody!!!!!!!!!!

Post a comment to this story

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
ADVERTISEMENT

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
 
Subscribe to IBJ
  1. Uh, sorry Johnnie, but you are incorrect. Despite the assertions by yourself and various defenders and captains, sports attendance is NOT off significantly at most sporting events in the US. Variances in attendance has been in the range of single digits, both + & - for years now. MLB has had most of its best overall attendance nubers in the last decade, and that trend has been consistent for most major sporting events. The number one issue cited by most fans when asked about attendance is the overall cost of attending. The presence of HD and big screen televisions in home doesn't even register, as a factor for not attending an event. VALUE in the product is the key, and apparently is something lacking in the current ICS. What other explanation is there when with what is routinely touted as the "best" racing on the planet, fans are staying away in DROVES. A "close" title battle into the last event at Fontana, with the "cars and stars" of the ICS, and who showed up? MAYBE 8K. Sorry, but HD TV isn't to blame for that kind of fan apathy.

  2. Do you need finance to establish your business ? Are you interested in getting a loan at 3% from our private company? If so please Email: suntrust_oil@blumail.org

  3. If she was worth the $ the public outcry over direct tv dropping them would have kept them on their dishes as we have seen with other companies. I too quit watching channel 13 after she showed up since I left channel 8 because of her all show rather than production results. When Randy on 8 corrected her she had a big head and incorrectly challenged his correction for pronunciation of a city. Other antics while she matures was too much for me with her very inaccurate forecasts. All the forecasters were predicting rain until Thursday except Chris. They predicted sunny on Thursday but instead of rain until Thursday upon which the sun would finally make it out in full glory Chris was right on the money just as I too predicted looking at the radar on weather.gov. One thing I love about Angela is the fear you can see in her every time it thunders in the winter. It far exceeds the entertainment value of her body language (high heel noise drags, depression, etc) when her forecasts are so incorrect. Her hair stands on end, you have to see it!!!

  4. Good Day, Apply For A Loan I am Mr Fernadez Antonio, a private Loan lender and a cooperate financial for real estate and any kinds of business financing. I also offer Loans to individuals, Firms and cooperate bodies at 3% interest rate We offer any kind of loans. email us via fernadezloaninvest@outlook.com LOAN APPLICATION FORM First name:......................... Middle name:......................... Last name:........................................ Date of birth (yyyy-mm-dd):....................... Gender:........................................... Marital status:................................... Total Amount Needed............................... Loan Duration.................................... Address:.......................................... City:............................................. State/province:................................... Zip/postal code:.................................. Country:.......................................... Phone:............................................ Fax:.............................................. Mobile/cellular:.................................. Monthly Income.................................... Occupation:....................................... Best Regard, Mr Fernadez Antonio.

  5. i will love to share my testimony to you all the people in world i got married to my husband about 2 year ago we start having problems at home like we stop sleeping on the same bed,fighting about little things he always comes home late at night,drinking too much and sleeping with other women out side i have never love any man in my life except him. he is the father of my child and i don't want to loose him because we have worked so hard together to become what we are and have today .few month ago he now decided to live me and the kid,being a single mother can be hard sometimes and so i have nobody to turn to and i was heart broken.i called my mom and explain every thing to her,my mother told me about DR.okoro how he helped her solve the problem between her and my dad i was surprise about it because they have been without each other for three and a half years and it was like a miracle how they came back to each other. i was directed to DR. okoro on his email:okorospell@gmail.com and explain everything to him,so he promise me not to worry that he will cast a spell and make things come back to how we where so much in love again and that it was another female spirit that was controlling my husband he told me that my problem will be solved within two days if i believe i said OK So he cast a spell for me and after two days my love came back asking me to forgive him i Am so happy now. so that why i decided to share my experience with every body that have such problem contact Dr okoro the great spell caster on his email addresses spellcasterforlove@outlook.com

ADVERTISEMENT