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Nevada Judge Tosses Trump Elector Case

 June 24, 2024

Clark County, Nevada District Court Judge Mary Kay Holthus has dismissed the closely-watched "fake electors" case concerning the 2020 presidential election due to jurisdictional issues.

The case, which was dropped on June 21, involved allegations that six Republicans illegally submitted certificates to Congress claiming former President Donald Trump had won the 2020 election, but has since been unceremoniously tossed for jurisdictional problems, as Fox News reports.

Judge Dismisses Charges Over Venue Issues

The judge ruled that the Nevada Attorney General's Office had filed the case in the wrong court. The six defendants, prominent members of the Republican Party, were initially charged with offering a false instrument for filing and uttering a forged instrument -- offenses that could have resulted in up to five years in prison if convicted.

The accused included state GOP chairman Michael McDonald, Clark County Republican Party chairman Jesse Law, national party committee member Jim DeGraffenreid, Douglas County committee member Shawn Meehan, Storey County clerk Jim Hindle, and Eileen Rice, a party member from the Lake Tahoe area.

Judge Holthus indicated that the offenses allegedly took place in northern Nevada cities like Carson City or Reno, making Clark County an incorrect venue for the trial.

Judge Questions Jurisdiction and Venue

In questioning the venue, Judge Holthus remarked, "What exactly occurred here to give us jurisdiction?" She further noted, "I mean, let’s face it, the majority of this happened elsewhere, the way I read it."

Defense attorneys successfully argued that any charges now brought in a different venue would violate the three-year statute of limitations, which expired in December 2023.

Attorney Monti Jordana Levy, representing Eileen Rice, accused the prosecution of "forum shopping." A spokesperson for Nevada Attorney General Aaron Ford confirmed that the office "will be appealing immediately."

Previous Attack on Judge

The dismissal comes months after Judge Holthus was attacked by defendant Deobra Redden in a separate case. During a hearing on Jan. 3, 2024, Redden assaulted the judge after being denied bond. Several people were injured, and Redden was later sentenced to up to four years in prison.

The attack and its aftermath were widely shared on social media, bringing national attention to the courtroom incident. Redden, facing nine charges including attempted murder and battery on a protected person, had his trial postponed to at least September 2024 after the events.

Broader Context of "Fake Electors" Cases

While Nevada's case involved only six individuals, similar "fake elector" cases are pending in multiple states. No trials are expected to begin before the 2024 presidential election, given the complex legal and procedural elements involved.

The cases revolve around the process by which certain Republicans submitted alternative slates of electors following the 2020 presidential election, actions that have been contested in various legal jurisdictions.

Observers and legal experts note that these cases may test the boundaries of state and federal jurisdiction regarding election certifications and related activities.

As legal battles unfold, the implications of these proceedings could have a significant impact on future election-related litigations and the broader context of electoral integrity in the United States.

Fallout and Reactions

Judge Holthus’s decision to dismiss the case in Clark County is likely to be scrutinized as the AG's office prepares its appeal. The broader implications of this dismissal may resonate through ongoing and future "fake elector" cases in other jurisdictions.

With legal battles still on the horizon, the next phases will be critical in determining the outcomes and potential precedents that may arise from these cases.

In summary, the recent dismissal of the "fake electors" case by Judge Mary Kay Holthus has spotlighted the importance of jurisdictional accuracy in legal proceedings.

Nevada’s attorney general plans to appeal the decision, and similar cases are pending across multiple states, emphasizing the ongoing struggle over election integrity and the rule of law.