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Election interference allegations ‘unfounded’

Text messages receive by Kingsland residents on March 4-5 and March 16. The Llano County Attorney’s Office released a public statement calling the election interference allegations 'unfounded.' Images courtesy of Tammy Manning

Allegations of interference in the March primary election for Llano County Precinct 3 commissioner are “unfounded,” said County Attorney Dwain Rogers in a media statement released Thursday, May 16. 

The release addressed rumors spread by anonymous text messages to some Kingsland residents that the Llano County Attorney’s Office is investigating “election interference charges” against two members of Precinct 3 commissioner candidate Brent Richards’ campaign. 

Richards is in a May 28 primary runoff against Bull Guthrie for the Republican nomination. Kingsland makes up the lion’s share of Precinct 3.

“No criminal charges will be brought against any citizen for activities alleged to have been in violation of the Texas Election Code regarding the complaint made to this office related to the March 2024 Republican primary,” reads the media release from Rogers. “All charges were thoroughly investigated and determined to be unfounded.”

Since the anonymous text messages dragged the investigation into the public eye, the Attorney’s Office was required to address the situation, according to the release.

“Normally investigations of citizen complaints, both civil and criminal, are not publicly disclosed upon completion and rejection of a complaint,” the release reads. “Unfortunately, a recent text message that discloses the existence of the investigation has been sent out to Llano County residents today (May 16). Because this information has been made public, it has required this office to respond.”

DailyTrib.com acquired a screenshot of the text messages that were sent to residents in Kingsland and Precinct 3. 

One reads:

“Kingsland Breaking: Election Troubles!

At least 2 Members of Candidate Brent Richard’s campaign team are under investigation by the Llano County Attorney’s Office for ELECTION INTERFERENCE charges, including at least one FELONY charge, according to officials. Richards is in a runoff election against Bull Guthrie.

Stop to Unsubscribe.”

The other reads:

“Cheating in Kingsland Commissioners Race???

Kingsland Commissioner candidate Brent Richards wife accused of election interference.

Stop to Unsubscribe.”

The first text came from 325-305-0571; the second from 325-305-7667. DailyTrib.com attempted to contact both of these numbers but reached dial tones on all attempts.

The screenshots were pulled from a Facebook post made by Kingsland resident Tammy Manning on Friday, May 17.

Manning said she did not receive the texts herself—they were sent to her by neighbors—and she isn’t sure how many Precinct 3 residents got them.

“We know many that got the message, I was notified by many people,” she wrote in a Facebook Messenger exchange with DailyTrib.com. “The person is only sending it to certain people, and they are picking and choosing. Not everyone in Pct 3 got it.”

Candidate Brent Richards addressed the text messages in a Facebook post on Thursday afternoon. 

“I assume (the Llano County Attorney’s Office press release) is referencing a text that went out on March 4th and 5th for the final voting day and it specifically mentions my wife,” Richards’ post reads. “Then this morning (May 16) another text was sent out which is referenced in the Attorney’s Press release. As you will read, these charges are UNFOUNDED.”

DailyTrib.com reached out to the Llano County Attorney’s Office for further comment on the matter, but County Attorney Rogers stated that the media release was the only statement his office wished to make.

dakota@thepicayune.com

1 thought on “Election interference allegations ‘unfounded’

  1. Text spoofing is easy. If they find whomever did it they need to file charges. Gee-who would benefit from this eh? LOL

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