Evansville woman gets probation for absentee ballot charge

EVANSVILLE, Ind. — An Evansville Democratic Party activist has been sentenced to probation for sending illegally pre-marked mailings to voters ahead of the 2020 primary elections.

Janet Reed was ordered to serve 18 months of probation for one count of unauthorized absentee ballot, to which she pleaded guilty in May, the Evansville Courier & Press reported Thursday.

Prosecutors said Reed mailed the absentee ballot applications with instructions leaving voters no choice but to participate in the Democratic Party’s June 2 primary.

Prosecutors filed the charge in May 2020 after the Vanderburgh County Election Board referred it to them with a letter outlining the legal case against Reed. It included samples of applications Reed sent to voters pre-marking for Democrats the section that allows them to choose a party.

Reed was working for the campaign of E. Thomasina Marsili, an Owen County Democrat who won the party’s nomination to challenge 8th District Republican U.S. Rep. Larry Bucshon but lost in the general election.