Williams sentenced in voter fraud case

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, May 24, 2006

NATCHEZ &8212; Henrietta Williams showed no signs of remorse or surprise when she was sentenced Friday to serve 18 months in jail.

Williams&8217; full sentence for a March 9 conviction in the Ferriday voter fraud case is five years hard labor. All but the 18 months were suspended.

Williams &8212; part of a case against five Ferriday residents revolving around the 2004 mayoral elections &8212; was found guilty of tampering with the absentee ballot of Maude Lee Williams.

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She will also serve five years on probation after serving her time, along with 32 hours of community service.

Judge Sharon Marchman said Williams is not allowed to work voting polls in the future.

She will also be required to pay court costs and other fines.

The defense said they would appeal the conviction.

Williams was the first of the five to go to trial. Justin Conner, Willie Robinson, Emerson Slain and James Skipper have not yet gone to trial.

All five were arrested in April 2005 on voter fraud charges.

Williams was also charged with 21 other counts of forging, filing false ballots and conspiracy relating to the absentee ballots of Estella, Lillie and Frederick White.

The Attorney General&8217;s office decided to try Williams first on the sole unrelated count.