Fraud, bribery lead indictment against state rep. - KATV - Breaking News, Weather and Razorback Sports

Fraud, bribery lead indictment against state rep.

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(KATV) - An Arkansas state representative resigns amid allegations of using our freedom to vote to his advantage.

A federal indictment states that in 2011 Hudson Hallum conspired with three others to impact absentee ballots. Hallum pleaded to guilty to the charges on Wednesday.

Definitely a sore eye for the Arkansas election system in Crittenden County where joining Hallum on this indictment are his father, a West Memphis city councilman, and a West Memphis police officer.

It even reads they coordinated with Crittenden County's own clerk's office.

Court papers say Hallum, Arkansas' 54th district representative and campaign members altered absentee ballots doing everything from tracking their delivery to and from voters, to submitting the applications.

"I was kind of stunned by it, you know, and very disappointed, and I don't think I wanted to read anymore," said University of Arkansas Little Rock political science professor, Art English.

Political science professor Art English saw the writing on the wall where it appears bribery played a large role in votes.

Allegations like a "family of eight requesting a 'family meal,'" in exchange for votes.

At one time Hallum told a West Memphis council member working his campaign that "$20 to $40 was too much to pay for one vote."

Then, his father gets involved where the indictment said he "instructed the other conspirators to pay $25 to each of the absentee voters that appeared before the Crittenden County Election Commission.

"But sometimes when political power is at stake people will do things that are you know, obviously unethical or fundamentally illegal," English added.

Regarding the election in two months the Arkansas Secretary of State's Office said Hallum's name will remain on the ballot opposite Fred Smith because of its timing.

Should Hallum win, that would force a special election without his name on the ballot.

In the 2011 elections under question absentees accounted for 44 percent of Hallum's votes in the primary, and 38 percent in the general election.

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