In an event that shows just how far out of touch with reality Colorado’s Republic Party has become, election denier Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters, who was indicted a month ago on multiple felony charges related to tampering with election equipment, was the runaway winner for the Secretary of State nomination at the Colorado Republican Party state assembly April 9, 2022 in Colorado Springs. Peters won a whopping 62% of the vote, making her the Republicans’ front runner for Secretary of State in the primary election on June 28. Peters will oppose former two-term Jefferson County Clerk and Recorder and former president of the Colorado County Clerks Association Pam Anderson, on the primary ballot. Anderson petitioned her way onto the ballot. (Anderson’s mother-in-law is former longtime Colorado Senate Majority Leader Norma Anderson.) While Pam Anderson is a Republican, she not an election denier. Peters also faces Mike O’Donnell, a candidate from Yuma County.
A report yesterday evening from Kyle Clark of 9News in Denver confirmed that indicted Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters has closed down her legal defense fund website, StandWithTina.org, and shifted her legal fundraising out of state to a Wisconsin fund operated by My Pillow CEO and fellow election conspiracist Mike Lindell. Lindell told Clark he is now funding Peters’ legal defense through the site, and is using some of his own funds to help her as well.
If you haven’t had time yet to read the entire 18-page indictment of Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters (pdf) filed March 8 that led to her arrest on seven felonies and three misdemeanors, probably the newest and most interesting additional information in it is about the infamous “Gerald Wood,” who we all thought was the unauthorized person Peters smuggled into the secure room where the election equipment is kept.
Turns out he wasn’t.
A new bill introduced in the Colorado Senate March 11 appears to be tailor-made to address the behaviors exhibited by Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters that led to her 10 criminal indictments last week over election tampering, including seven felonies. If she’s convicted, she could go to prison.
House Bill 22-153 (pdf), titled “Internal Election Security Measures,” would shorten the amount of time newly-elected clerks have to get certified to run elections from two years to six months. The required courses include information in voter registration and list maintenance, accessibility, coordinated elections, mail-in ballot and in-person voting processes, voting systems testing, risk-limiting audits, canvassing, and election security.
Peters never got the state-required certification to run elections
Jason Jovanovich, an attorney and former district judge from Glenwood Springs, is the attorney handling Tina Peters’ recent criminal indictment for alleged election equipment tampering.
Republican Governor Bill Owens appointed Jovanovich as a judge in Garfield County in 2005.
“If I had a big red button right here that would kill all the pit bulls, I wouldn’t hesitate to press it.”
Garfield County is feeling some ripple effects from the Tina Peters scandal, and there’s growing concern about it.
After four terms as Clerk and nearly 40 years of working in the Clerk’s office, long time Garfield County Clerk Jean Alberico, is retiring this year, which means there will be a contested election for the office of Clerk and Recorder in Garfield County for the first time in many years this election cycle. Normally few people care about the Clerk and Recorder’s office in their county, but Garfield County voters need look no further than Mesa County next door to understand the importance of this office and the disaster that can unfold if the wrong person is elected to it, as happened here in Mesa County.
An investigation by the State of Colorado (pdf) has revealed that the quit claim deed filed by Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters last year for property that belonged to her ex-husband was not notarized in accordance with Colorado law.
The case involves a home on Orchard Mesa purchased by Tina’s ex-husband, Thomas Peters, that Tina Peters obtained by filing the questionable quit claim deed.
On December 23, 2021, Thomas M. Peters, filed a lawsuit (pdf) against his ex-wife, Tina Peters, alleging she breached her fiduciary duty and engaged in “theft by deception” to illegally seize a home he had purchased for himself with his own funds after they divorced in October, 2021.
Tina Peters was booked into the Mesa County jail this afternoon on $500,000 cash-only bond after surrendering at the Mesa County Sheriff’s Office.
According to the Daily Sentinel, if she is convicted on all charges, and if they run consecutively, Peters could get a maximum penalty of 28 years in jail and $2.7 million in fines, and Knisley could get a maximum sentence of 21 years in prison and $2 million in fines.
Peters blamed her arrest on Democrats and establishment Republicans who dislike Donald Trump. She gave a long statement to the Daily Sentinel that said in part, “Using a grand jury to formalize politically motivated accusations against candidates is (a) tactic long employed by the Democrat Party.”
The grand jury indicted Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters this morning (pdf) on 13 counts related to her official misconduct and tampering with election equipment. The charges include a mix of felonies and misdemeanors.
Peters is charged with three counts of attempting to influence a public servant (a Class 4 felony), one count of attempting to influence a public servant (a Class 5 felony), one count of criminal impersonation (a Class 6 felony), one count of conspiracy to commit criminal impersonation (a Class 6 felony); one count of identify theft (a Class 4 felony) and one count of first-degree official misconduct, a Class 2 misdemeanor. Peters is also charged with one count each of violation of duty and failure to comply with the Secretary of State, both unclassified misdemeanor offenses.
The grand jury also indicted Deputy Mesa County Clerk Belinda Knisely on violation of duty, failure to comply with the Secretary of State, conspiracy to commit criminal impersonation, and multiple counts of attempting to influence a public servant.
In this exchange during her speaking engagement at the Jefferson County Republican Men’s Club on February 21, a woman in the audience asks election conspiracy-theorist Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters how to get “voters with inappropriate names off the voter list”:
Woman to Tina: “Is there anything we can do at this point, at this election, I mean to get these voters with inappropriate names off the voter list?”
Tina: “Yes, there’s some issues on HAVA [the Help America Vote Act] (pdf). They stand behind HAVA a lot. That is the national voting act where they are bringing in all these drop boxes and making elections “more accessible” to everybody. [Tina gestures using air quotes when she says “more accessible”]. Well, they’re really not. They’re making them more accessible to the ones that shouldn’t be voting.”
Tina Peters is running to replace Jenna Griswold as Colorado Secretary of State.
Speaking to members of the Jefferson County Republican Men’s Club on February 21, 2022 (video), Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters claimed that she was “framed” when election workers found “429 ballots” uncollected in a ballot box from the 2019 election.
The ballots were discovered when election workers went to empty the box for the 2020 election, but Peters refused to petition a judge to open and count them and include them in the final vote tally from the 2019 election. In her talk, Peters also got the number of uncounted ballots wrong. 574 ballots were discovered left in the ballot box, not 429.
Peters claimed without evidence that “they stuffed the ballot box with 479 ballots” in order to “take over my office” and said it was part of an effort to “take over the western slope.”
Lots of people have been saying it under their breath, but no one has come out and said it publicly. Mostly people have just gotten angry at Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters for her increasingly strange behavior, but maybe it’s time to start pitying Tina.
We can all agree that Tina’s behavior has been very far outside what is considered normal for an elected county clerk:
Normal clerks don’t compromise their own election equipment. They don’t flee the state on private jets, spend weeks hiding in safe houses in secret locations around the country or accept largesse from multi-millionaires to promote wacky election conspiracy theories. Normal clerks don’t blow off their obligation as clerks (pdf) to get certified to run elections as the state requires. Normal clerks don’t proclaim that the candidates who won an election shouldn’t have won because they were the wrong people to win. Normal county clerks don’t get their homes raided by the FBI.
Update: Tina Peters finally filed a candidate affidavit saying she is running for Secretary of State on 2/23/22.
Adding a whole new level of crazy to her repertoire, after getting arrested last week on charges of obstruction, and then telling an adoring election conspiracy-theory endorsing crowd in Castle Rock immediately afterward that no one can stop her, Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters announced this morning that she is running for Secretary of State (SOS), and will challenge incumbent SOS Jena Griswold for the seat.
No proof of candidacy for SOS so far
The only problem is Peters declared on the steps of the Mesa County Justice Center on January 13 that she was running for re-election as Mesa County Clerk. She can’t run for both offices at once, and so far the only candidate affidavit on file with the Secretary of State’s office is the one that says she is running for County Clerk. There is no affidavit on Tracer showing she is actually running for Secretary of State. A call to the Secretary of State’s Campaign Finance Office (CFO), where candidates must submit their affidavits to officially be considered running for any office, revealed that so far no affidavit for Peters’ run for SOS exists either on their website or in the pending queue of the CFO, and Peters hasn’t taken any action to nullify her affidavit to run for clerk.
Over-the-top, rogue Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters turned herself in to the Mesa County Sheriff’s Office this morning on a misdemeanor arrest warrant around 10:30 a.m., paid her own bond of $500 and was soon released, according to news reports.
This arrest was for obstructing a peace officer as she refused to turn over an IPad pursuant to a warrant for the item issued by the DA’s office yesterday. Peters was believed to have illegally used the IPad to record a court proceeding for her former Chief Deputy Clerk Belinda Knisley, who is facing charges of cybercrime and 2nd degree felony burglary.
You can read the warrant for Tina Peters’ arrest here.
The above is a 2 minute video of Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters getting cuffed and detained this morning around 10:45 a.m. by law enforcement officers in the front room at Main Street Bagels. The video was posted on the website of 9News in Denver.
The video shows Peters kicking at an officer, struggling to get away, yelling “That hurts! Let go of me! Give me my car keys!” The officers cuff her and take her outside onto the sidewalk in front of the restaurant.
Peters was detained for resisting a search warrant for her IPad, which she allegedly used to record a court hearing she attended for her former Chief Deputy Belinda Knisely earlier that morning, despite the judge having admonished people inside the courtroom not to record the proceedings.
Word is that rogue Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters was handcuffed this morning at Main Street Bagels, around 11:00 a.m. in the front area of the restaurant. Peters was wearing a red jacket, was surrounded by law enforcement officials in county uniforms, including one woman, and some plain-clothes cops. Peters was cuffed with her hands behind her back in the front portion of the restaurant. More soon.
Update, 1:08 p.m., 2/8/22 – There’s information on Twitter from Jesse A. Paul of the Colorado Sun, formerly of the Denver Post, that Tina was “briefly detained and released,” that her detainment did not have to do directly with the breach of an election system, and that authorities are going to release additional information soon.
On December 31, 2021, Steve Bannon lionized Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters on his internet TV show “Bannon’s War Room,” in an interview titled “The Deplorables-Gold Star Mom Tina Peters Who Sounded The Alarm On Election Fraud.”
Bannon let Peters spew the usual string of rants we’re all familiar with by now: how terribly she’s been harassed, how “they’re attacking regular Americans,” how they “fired her elections manager with no due process, nothing” and how they so horribly removed her chief deputy in August on “trumped-up charges.”
A minute and a half into the 7-minute interview, Bannon starts trying to play Tina off with increasingly loud bagpipe music, he lets her mechanically drone one for another minute or so. Tina continues… “They booked my chief deputy on a class 4 felony just for coming to work” and “they had a battering ram in the driveway” that she now admits “they didn’t use.”
Bannon cuts her off roughly 30 seconds later to go for a break.
A new lawsuit (pdf) filed December 23, 2021 against Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters by her former husband, Thomas M. Peters, involving a dispute over property ownership could pose even more trouble for the embattled clerk at a time when a grand jury is set to determine whether criminal charges should be brought against her for tampering with election equipment.
“Theft by Deception” and “Breach of Fiduciary Duty”
Allegations against Tina Peters in the case include “conversion” (defined as “unauthorized possession of personal property causing curtailment of the owner’s possession,” in this case residential property), “breach of fiduciary duty” and “theft by deception.”
Documents about the lawsuit were sent anonymously and are of public interest.
The case number is 2021CV30321, and the judge in the case is 21st Judicial District Court Judge Gretchen B. Larson. The next hearing is a review set for February 22, 2022 in Room 12 of the Mesa County Justice Center.