Judge rules against request for new election, petition to contest Long Co. election results

Judge rules against request for new election, petition to contest Liberty Co. election results

LIBERTY COUNTY, Ga. (WTOC) - An update to a story about a Long County candidate questioning the June 9 election results, specifically the probate judge race.

Incumbent Magistrate Judge Bobby Smith faced off against challenger Teresa Odum in the June primary. After two recounts, election results showed Odum beat Smith by nine votes.

Smith and his attorney claimed there were voting irregularities, bringing the allegations to court in September.

The Superior Court of Long County denied probate judge candidate Bobby Smith’s request for a new election and petition to contest the election results.

The final order comes after a three-day virtual trial with Superior Court Judge John Morse.

“There were probably close to 50 witnesses that were called by the other side, mostly voters whose ballots Judge Smith and his attorney were trying to throw out,” said Luke Moses, attorney for Teresa Odum.

Attorney Jake Evans and Smith claimed voters voted twice by absentee ballot and in-person, and absentee ballot applications weren’t signed, among other claims.

The Court’s order outlines each claim, and concluded that, “...the evidence offered is insufficient to cast doubt on this election in order to invalidate it.”

Evans, in a statement, told WTOC he is disappointed and surprised by the order, saying, “The Order is erroneous and eviscerates electoral protections in Georgia. We are considering available options, and seek to ensure that all candidates and voters have fair elections in Georgia.”

Odum’s attorney, Luke Moses, says he was confident that the Court would follow Georgia law and feels justice was prevailed.

The Secretary of State’s Office confirmed in August it was also looking into what happened during the June 9 election. We’re told that investigation is still ongoing, as the case hasn’t been presented to the Board of Elections yet.

Below is the judge’s final order:

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