The court case surrounding the contested Conecuh County Sheriff's race appears to have stalled after more than a year of uncertainty. New information is causing outrage within the Secretary of State's Office.

Republican candidate Mike Blackmon filed the election contest after a recount concluded he lost by one vote to Democrat Randy Brock.

Blackmon began investigating and found information he says confirms the final count for the election was incorrect.

Several Conecuh County voters have confirmed people came to their homes unprompted with absentee ballots, filled them out and turned them in for them.

Conecuh County Probate Judge Steve Flemming said he hasn't heard of absentee ballots being illegally obtained and submitted. He said there are some examples of that practice being legal.

"If you were to fill out an absentee ballot because you are bed-ridden and can't get out of bed, you can request an absentee ballot and ask for assistance on that," he explained.

However, in a video viewed by 1819 News, one voter said "some girl" came to his house, filled out his ballot, and then turned it in for him. He said he usually goes to a polling place but let the woman do it for him since she offered. Another woman admitted a woman convinced her to fill out an absentee ballot and turn it in to her. She said the lady returned a couple of days later and asked her to fill out another ballot because she had lost the original.

Secretary of State Wes Allen said he was unaware of the recordings until 1819 News asked about it.

"If this audio is authenticated and if it was recorded in Alabama, I am outraged," Allen said in a statement. "I would strongly encourage the person who made this recording to immediately turn it over to their local district attorney or the Attorney General."

"It is my duty as Secretary of State to strongly advocate for the security of Alabama's elections through the strengthening of absentee voting protections," Allen continued. "That is why I am supportive of the passage of SB1."

SB1 would make it a class C felony to knowingly receive a payment or gift in exchange for ballot harvesting.

"If Alabama citizens are approached by someone offering to fill out or submit their absentee ballot, they should refuse the offer and report the incident to their local law enforcement agency, district attorney's office, or the office of the Attorney General of Alabama," Allen added.

Flemming said he is surprised there hasn't been any update in the case in nine months. He said he had not heard a word from the court since the depositions of two canvassing board members, including himself and the circuit clerk.

"It's really shocking to me because we are a year and a half into this now," Flemming told 1819 News.

Flemming said he hears from Blackmon and Brock nearly every day and that both are on "pins and needles."

Brock said the situation has put the upcoming election under a dark cloud.

"I kind of hate overlapping problems like that, but I'm not sure what the end result is going to be," Flemming added.

Among the issues Flemming did see were ballots that were incorrectly filled out. For example, some Democrat voters simply circled the Democrat logo instead of filling in the circle beside the party name. In other cases, Republican voters put a checkmark over the name of the candidate instead of filling in the hole.

"At the end of the day, if people would just read those beautiful instructions over the ballot, we wouldn't even be here," Flemming added.

The judge assigned to the case is the Honorable Braxton Kittrell. Kittrell has not responded to a media request by 1819 News.

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