By Brian Maass

LOVELAND, Colo. (CBS4) – An ongoing CBS4 Investigation into dead voters in Colorado has turned up another dead voter — this time in Larimer County.

“I don’t think it was an accident,” said Larimer County Clerk and Recorder Angela Myers, who acknowledged she found the most recent dead voter after the initial CBS4 Investigation entitled “Dying To Vote,” which aired last month. That initial investigation found a handful of votes cast in the names of dead Coloradans months, and sometimes years, after they died.

(credit: CBS)

CBS4’s Brian Maass interviews Angela Myers (credit: CBS)

Myers said following that report, the Secretary of State sent her a list of deceased voters to double check.

“We did find a single deceased voter,” she said, “and unfortunately it was counted.”

That apparently fraudulent vote was cast in the name of Irvin Mniszewski, 88, of Loveland, who died Sept. 6, 2011. But six weeks later, on Oct. 16, 2011, a vote was cast in Mniszewski’s name in a Larimer County election and it was counted on Oct. 19, 2011.

(credit: CBS)

Irvin Mniszewski (credit: CBS)

“You think someone tried to forge his signature and get an extra vote?” Myers was asked. “Potentially, absolutely someone voted for him and he was gone,” responded Myers, who is a Republican. CBS4 examined Mniszewski’s signature as well as the signature on the apparently forged ballot. Both signatures appeared similar.

(credit: CBS)

Irvin Mniszewski (credit: CBS)

“I’m very surprised,” said Myers, “very unhappy about it.”

She said the case has been forwarded on to the local district attorney for potential criminal prosecution.

She said the dead man’s vote slipped past both Democrat and Republican election judges who examined the signatures and felt they matched. Although Myers said she was unhappy about it, she emphasized that such cases are rare. She said with about 230,000 voters registered in Larimer County, it’s inevitable there will be some fraudulent votes.

“I would be naïve not to think there is a ne’er-do-well in that number,” said the clerk and recorder.

To the south, in Douglas and Arapahoe Counties, CBS4 found seven cases of voter fraud that were prosecuted between 2009 and 2015 that led to either guilty pleas or findings of guilt at trial. All were misdemeanor cases.

Merlin Klotz (credit: CBS)

Merlin Klotz (credit: CBS)

“We’ve had cases — we catch ’em and send them to the DA,” said Douglas County Clerk and Recorder Merlin Klotz. But Klotz emphasized that the number of dead voters and fraud cases is small compared to the number of votes cast.

“To me that’s a success story and reinforces my faith in Colorado’s system,” said Klotz.

With nearly 4 million voters in Colorado, and a relatively small number of votes cast in the name of the deceased, Klotz said “I was amazed it wasn’t in the hundreds. I was just amazed the number wasn’t larger. I think our system is tight.”

However, to the north in Boulder County, Mike Simmons wonders how tight the system really is. His mother, Daisy Simmons, died in 2010.

(credit: CBS)

Daisy Simmons (credit: CBS)

Simmons said her death is on file with the State of Colorado and federal authorities. However, he said every year since his mother’s death, ballots have continued to arrive at her Boulder County home.

“If it shows up in the mailbox theres a temptation to open it, fill it out and see what happens. I believe I could have scrawled her signature and it would not have been challenged.”

(credit: CBS)

CBS4’s Brian Maass interviews Mike Simmons (credit: CBS)

Simmons said he never did, but says his mother’s case “really shows me we have a vulnerability in this mail only ballot system we have in the state.”

He said he disposed of most of the ballots but kept one unopened ballot from 2015 which he opened in the presence of CBS4.

“So this was mailed out October 2015, five years and seven months after she passed away,” said Simmons, as he opened the ballot in his kitchen. “I’m not convinced my mom’s case is a singular event. I think it happens quite a bit.”

Lynn Bartels, spokeswoman for Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams, said in 2014, 153,518 ballots, or roughly 5 percent of all ballots mailed out, were returned as undeliverable.

Merlin Klotz acknowledged such cases are a problem, but he said, “I believe there is an ethical responsibility, if you receive someone else’s ballot that you return it and mark it deceased.”

CBS4 Investigator Brian Maass has been with the station more than 30 years uncovering waste, fraud and corruption. Follow him on Twitter @Briancbs4.

Comments (90)
  1. Tom Cassidy says:

    I’m sorry…explain why they are mailing ballots to me. I live in Indiana and in order to vote absentee (by mail) you have to submit an application. This story leads me to believe that ballots are just routinely mailed. Don’t you go to the polls to vote in Colorado?

  2. Collins says:

    Why don’t liberal progessives protest that requiring a photo ID to purchase alcohol, tobacco, or get on an airplane deprives the poor of liquor, tobacco, and the right to fly? Answer–they know that it is BS!

  3. John Beargrass says:

    But to show a photo ID is so very difficult.

  4. Kim A Kirk says:

    Our country should treat voter fraud as an act of Treason. Those found guilty should be executed. Undermining our democracy should be met with zero tolerance.

  5. Bob Gold says:

    Dead for Dumbocrats.

  6. MadBag says:

    Merlin Klotz acknowledged such cases are a problem, but he said, “I believe there is an ethical responsibility, if you receive someone else’s ballot that you return it and mark it deceased.”

    What’s that old saying? Oh yes, locks keep out honest people. If someone wants to cheat on voting, where do ethics enter the picture?

  7. Moleculist says:

    Dead lives matter!

  8. Moleculist says:

    Dead live matter!!!!

  9. JoeD. says:

    Should Americans consent to be governed by the undeserving recipients of a corrupted vote?

  10. It’s called “Rocky Mountain Heist”, and it was reported by Michelle Malkin. The heist resulted in flipping Colorado from Republican to Democrat. Total fraud.

  11. Robert Pante says:

    In Florida some Democrat Judge just extended voter registration. They are out there now digging up the voters.

  12. cabrerski says:

    I noticed in the story that they told us about the fraudulent voting but they conveniently left out who was the beneficiary of that fraud. Perhaps because it is the same as most of the voter fraud in this country.

  13. David from San Diego says:

    Trump would have to win 55-45 just to overcome the fraudulent votes by multiple voters, people voting under the names of the dead, non-citizen voters (only some of whom are here illegally), and ineligible felons.

  14. Crooked Hitlery says:

    Crooked FCKING HILLARY!!!

  15. Dan johnson says:

    Wow do you think 5 voters spread across the state changed an election? Congratulations channel 4 for aensationalism.

  16. Ruth Meyers says:

    How can it be an accident that a dead person votes?

  17. KARL KORDECKI says:

    All these dead voters turn up to vote democrat, don’t they

  18. NoRightToNotBeOffended says:

    That can’t be. Dems have told us over and over there is no voting fraud. Such liars. That is why they are against voter ID. They will loose the dead class.

  19. Hey!! I lived in Colorado 20 years ago, Can I vote there too!!!?

  20. When dead people “vote,” it just shows me that the election boards are too lazy to look at the list of people who died after the last election. It can’t be that much “work…” but then, for a lot of people, work is a four-letter word that is not politically correct, just like the word “lazy”. Does it mean that the legislature will have to create a law to make the election boards do their “work.” Wow, I need to start watching my potty mouth…

  21. I;m told facial recognition unit being sent to CO to recruit volunteers to link illegally registered voters (Hispanic and Middle Eastern) on the spot. Let’s hope they suppress those votes.

  22. Buzz says:

    The state election officials claim that every signature on a ballot is checked against a data base to verify the signature. That is BS. they don’t have the staff or the time to check the millions fo ballots.

  23. Thank goodness! Now all those poor darkies who spend all day long pickin’ cotton under the hot sun on the ol’ plantation and never have time to get to the DMV for a driver’s license will be able to vote! Of course, if they couldn’t get the time to get to the DMV, I’m not sure how they’ll be able to make it to the voting station, but maybe it’ll stay open extra late so they can bundle together in a horse-drawn wagon and get there just before closing time.

  24. MrReasonable says:

    We see story after story like this, and yet, Democrats still claim there has not been a single instance of voter fraud ever. This is why we want voter ID’s. It’s not about race, it is about preventing Democrats from voting multiple times. I have to show my ID every time I vote, so how is it fair that voters in the inner city don’t have to?

  25. Joel Barr says:

    Every single illegal vote cast cancels out the lawful vote of a citizen and should be prosecuted.

Leave a Reply