Written by: Michael Phillips
MANASSAS, VA — In a recent development, a Virginia judge has dismissed felony charges against former Prince William County Registrar Michele White, who was accused of misconduct related to the 2020 election.
Altered Testimony Leads to Legal Turnaround in Election Case
The decision came after state prosecutors revealed that a key witness had altered their testimony. On Friday, at the request of prosecutors, the judge dismissed a felony charge of corrupt conduct and another for making a false statement, both of which had been brought against Michele White.
Continuing Scrutiny: Misdemeanor Charge Still Pending
However, she still faces trial next month on a misdemeanor charge of willful neglect of duty. The details of the allegations against White have been largely kept under wraps, with court records indicating that the case revolves around the 2020 election returns, including the presidential race.
Election Integrity Unit’s Role in Initiation of Charges Prince William election officials previously mentioned "discrepancies" in results reported by White's successor, although they clarified that these discrepancies would not have impacted the outcome of any race. The case was initiated by Republican Attorney General Jason Miyares last year, shortly after creating an election integrity unit within his office. Critics accused Miyares of catering to supporters of former President Donald Trump, who falsely claimed election fraud contributed to his defeat.
Discrepancies in Voter Registration System Under Review
Assistant Attorney General James Herring filed a motion ahead of Friday's hearing, alleging that an elections worker had "conveniently and quite surprisingly provided a different version of events." Herring stated, "As a consequence, the Commonwealth is confronted with significant inconsistent statements."
Contrasting Legal Arguments: Defense Challenges Prosecution's Claims
White's lawyer, Zachary Stafford, countered this claim, asserting that his interview with the same witness revealed no inconsistencies. Stafford suggested that the witness clarified information not addressed in the initial investigation regarding who instructed changes in the state voter registration system.
The voter registration system, now under scrutiny, is being replaced following an audit that questioned its reliability and functionality. Stafford emphasized that the witness reported that White did not instruct him to make the changes in question, challenging the prosecution's characterization of the updated testimony as "convenient."
Awaiting Clarity: Upcoming Trial to Shed Light on Election Allegations
The Attorney General Miyares' office declined to comment further, citing the ongoing misdemeanor case. The dismissal of felony charges against Michele White brings a twist to the legal proceedings, and the upcoming trial on the misdemeanor charge will likely shed more light on the specifics of the allegations against the former elections official.