RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — Last December Wake County district attorney Lorrin Freeman filed to run for a third term but neglected to sign the form. A state board of elections employee notarized the document without that signature.
It wasn’t until April that the North Carolina State Board of Elections discovered the error, which was past the March filing deadline.
“Certainly, had at any point the Board of Elections notified me that our filing needed that to be complete I certainly would have done that,” Freeman told CBS 17.
Freeman fixed it, per guidance from the North Carolina State Board of Elections. But former Wake County sheriff’s candidate and attorney David Blackwelder has raised questions.
“When I became aware of this issue I thought it was important for me to have some accountability not only these politicians but for the people of Wake County,” said Blackwelder.
Blackwelder has filed a challenge with the NCSBE. The board responded to Blackwelder stating that he missed the candidate challenge deadline, which is within 10 days of filing. The NCSBE also told Blackwelder that he should have instead filed a protest with the Wake County Board of Elections.
Blackwelder told CBS 17 that he plans to do that.
“I think it is a wasted effort. Certainly there is always the opportunity under certain grounds and circumstances to file a protest during an election, there is a hearings process that unfolds,” Freeman said.
In a statement to CBS 17, the NCSBE acknowledged their mistake and said that the staff overlooked the missing signature. Once they realized the oversight, they contacted Freeman.
“In this particular situation we feel confident that a court ultimately will find that we were appropriate, that we were relying on the board of elections representation that we were duly filed,” Freeman said.
“This isn’t her first rodeo. I would think that she would know that she has to sign that form. I mean she’s done it several times and I just think that somebody that’s the lead chief law enforcement officer of the county, that she would know to look for somewhere to sign especially with that extra protection in place of somebody notarizing the signature having witnessed her sign it,” Blackwelder said.