Tracie Hunter files new lawsuit against Hamilton County leaders

Posted at 4:36 PM, Sep 29, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-29 17:09:51-04

CINCINNATI -- Tracie Hunter is nothing if not persistent.

The suspended Hamilton County Juvenile Court judge, who two years ago was convicted of judicial misconduct for helping her brother in a disciplinary hearing, filed a new lawsuit Tuesday against Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted, state Attorney General Mike DeWine and the Hamilton County Board of Elections. In the suit, Hunter alleged that the defendants had conspired to violate her civil rights and prevent her from registering to vote.

People convicted of felony offenses, such as Hunter, can vote in Ohio if they are not currently incarcerated, according to the ACLU. Typically these voting rights are rescinded upon conviction and restored upon release from prison or jail. (The offender must re-register at this time.) Hunter's voting rights were stripped upon her conviction, but she has not served her six-month sentence -- a federal judge issued a stay of sentence in May.

"The Board (of Elections) rejected her registration form, purportedly on the ground of her felony conviction alone," the suit reads. "The Board is statutorily required to process and approve voter registration for otherwise qualified electors who have been convicted of a felony but are not currently incarcerated."

Tracie Hunter Voting Lawsuit

The suit calls upon the Secretary of State to compel the Hamilton County Board of Elections to allow Hunter to register.

This is not the first time Hunter has taken legal action against Hamilton County leaders: Last week, a federal judge dismissed a previous suit in which she had accused them of violating her civil rights and giving her an unfair trial. 

A week before, the Hamilton County Board of Elections ruled that she was ineligible to run for her former office again.

“Our office is aware of the lawsuit, there is a status conference with the judge and the parties tomorrow. Our office intends to respond in court," said a spokesperson for the Attorney General's office.