Pair get probation in O.C. voter switch

Times Staff Writer

A couple who admitted to their roles in an Orange County voter registration scandal each were sentenced Wednesday to three years’ formal probation.

Jason Holly, 36, and Jessica Sundell, 23, were among 12 people arrested last fall and charged with signing up voters during a registration drive that resulted in dozens of Democrats fraudulently being signed up as Republicans.

Holly and Sundell, who pleaded guilty in November, cannot collect signatures for petitions or voter registration, said Senior Deputy Dist. Atty. Dan Hess, the lead prosecutor.


They will get credit for time served: 24 days for Holly and 30 days for Sundell, Hess said.

The scandal, which surfaced nearly a year ago, embarrassed the county’s Republican Party and underscored problems that can arise with signature-gathering and voter registration campaigns in which the workers are paid by the signature.

Campaign watchdogs have derisively called that practice a “bounty hunter” system.

One of the 12 defendants, Don Williams, remains a fugitive.

The others await court appearances and face up to three years in prison.

“I’m glad we’re starting to resolve the cases,” Hess said.

Hess added that he is hopeful that the jail time and probation terms for Holly and Sundell will “decrease similar cases in the future.”