The president of the company hired to collect signatures for the failed Arlington County change of government petition was arrested Friday by police in Warren, Mich.
Shawn Wilmoth, president of Signature Masters, was contracted to train local residents to collect 12,000 signatures. A grand jury passed two indictments of election fraud March 28.
Richard E. Trodden, the commonwealth’s attorney, stated this year in Simmons and Cockerham’s proffers of evidence that Wilmoth paid the two to fill petitions supporting a change in the form of Arlington County’s government at a rate of $2 per signatures.
Virginia law requires that each signature collected is witnessed by a person who can vote or register to vote. Cockerham and Simmons told Arlington police that they signed off on petitions that they did not circulate that were handed to them by Wilmoth. Cockerham and Simmons are convicted felons, making them ineligible to vote in Virginia, but were hired by Wilmoth, Trodden said.
Wilmoth told The Washington Post in an earlier interview that he was not aware of Simmons’s convictions.
“Cheryl Simmons had actually passed a background check,” Wilmoth said. “It was an issue with the background-check company we are dealing with.”
Wilmoth will have the choice to face or wave extradition to Arlington in the near future.