Md. attorney general charges ex-candidate with illegal distribution of campaign material
Jerry J. Mathis, an unsuccessful candidate for the Democratic nomination for Prince George's County Council, was charged Friday by Maryland Attorney General Douglas Gansler with distributing campaign material without proper markings.
Mathis, 57, of Fort Washington is charged with three misdemeanor counts of distributing campaign material without proper authority line. Each count is punishable by a maximum of one year in jail and a fine of $25,000.
Mathis is a real estate agent and a trustee of Prince George's Community College. He said Friday that the charges were unfounded and violated his free speech rights and those of Charles Summers, who was listed on the fliers as treasurer of Citizens for Change.
The fliers offered recommendations for voters in the Democratic primary but were challenged by several candidates, including State. Sen. C. Anthony Muse (D) who said they linked them with candidates they were not endorsing, and were misleading.
State officials said the group was not properly registered with the state elections board. Mathis is scheduled to be arraigned Oct. 15 in Prince George's County Circuit Court. Mathis sought the Democratic nomination for the council seat held by Tony Knotts, who is barred by term limits from running again. Obie Patterson won the seven-way contest.
Mathis, meanwhile, filed his own claim against Muse, saying his campaign committee was not correctly registered, which his campaigned has denied.
-- Miranda S. Spivack
Miranda S. Spivack
| October 8, 2010; 4:45 PM ET
Categories: 2010 Elections, Miranda Spivack
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