Colorado House District 10 Republican candidate Bill DeOreo has filed a complaint against the Boulder County Clerk and Recorder’s Office, arguing that the county has not been adequately monitoring its remote drop boxes.
DeOreo, who filed the complaint on Monday, said he became concerned about some of the county’s ballot drop boxes when participating in a Boulder County election office tour in June.
To monitor the drop boxes, there must be proper lighting and video surveillance. The camera was too far away and poorly lit, and it could not visualize either the face of the user nor what was being inserted in the box, the complaint argues.
DeOreo, who is currently representing himself, said he is hopeful a judge will require the county to bring its drop boxes into compliance.
But from the Boulder County Clerk and Recorder’s perspective, there is no problem to correct.
In response to a records request submitted by DeOreo, which was included in the complaint he filed, Clerk and Recorder Molly Fitzpatrick defended her office’s practices.
“Colorado law requires that all drop boxes be kept under 24-hour video surveillance with adequate lighting and that boxes are emptied by a bipartisan team who maintain a chain of custody log when transporting ballots between drop boxes and our ballot processing center,” she wrote. “I believe we are in compliance with these requirements.”
In a statement provided by email on Tuesday, spokesperson Mircalla Wozniak reiterated Fitzpatrick’s defense.
“The Boulder County Clerk & Recorder’s Office adheres to Colorado’s election laws and regulations, including the requirements applicable to ballot drop boxes,” she wrote in an email.
Wozniak added that the office would not be providing any further comment but said its attorneys will be responding to the complaint.
As part of the complaint, DeOreo expressed concerns, at least in part, that people could not be identified in the video surveillance he obtained from several ballot boxes across the county after a records request.
However, this is not the purpose of the videos recorded at the drop boxes, Fitzpatrick noted.
“The intention of the video surveillance for the boxes is to provide law enforcement with information if someone tried to do something to destroy the ballot box — an example could be attempting to set it on fire or trying to drag it away somehow,” she wrote.
The Boulder County Clerk & Recorder’s Office has 21 days to respond to DeOreo’s complaint. If the case proceeds, DeOreo said he would be looking for a litigator to represent him.