Several candidates for the May primary were disqualified or have withdrawn from the race.
According to the Lorain County Board of Elections, Dean Evans, Kyriece Brooks, Aaron Baker and Jeffrey Bailey were disqualified from the primaries for petition issues.
Democrat Dean Evans was running for Lorain mayor. He needed 50 valid signatures and only had 44. Of the 80 signatures he turned in, 36 were invalid signatures: 24 from those not registered to vote, six were tied to an address not the same as their voter registration, two with no address, three from outside of the city and one duplicate.
Evans said he did not check the signatures he collected to see if they were registered voters but plans to run in the general election as a write-in candidate.
Evans is a former South Amherst firefighter who was fired from the department for falsely reporting a fire at the New Russia Township hall in 2015.
Mayor Chase Ritenauer is running unopposed in the May primary. He’ll face Republican Jessie Tower in the general election.
Democrat Kyriece Brooks was running for Lorain’s Ward 2 City Council seat. He needed 25 valid signatures but only had 23. Of the 33 signatures he turned in, one was from someone not registered to vote, two were tied to an address not the same as the signee’s voter registration, four printed instead of signed their name (not matching their voter registration), one had no address and two were out of the ward.
“I wish both candidates that are running for (the) 2nd Ward the best and an awesome campaign to both of them,” Brooks said. “And you may or may not see my name in the general election.”
His disqualification leaves incumbent Democrat Dennis Flores to face off against Democrat Rob McFarland for the seat.
This is the second time Brooks has run for Lorain City Council, first running as a write-in candidate for Ward 2 in November 2017. He had been disqualified from the primary race that year as well because his petitions were not certified.
Democrat Aaron Baker was running to represent Elyria’s 7th Ward. He needed 25 valid signatures but only had 22. Of the 32 signatures he turned in, five were from people not registered to vote, one was from someone whose listed address was not the same as their voter registration and four printed instead of signed their name.
Baker could not be reached for comment.
His disqualification leaves incumbent Democrat Jack Cerra and Libertarian Brandon Bobbitt running for the seat in November.
Democrat Jeffrey Bailey, running to represent North Ridgeville’s 3rd Ward, needed 10 valid signatures but only had eight. Of the 12 signatures he turned in, four were from the wrong party affiliate.
Bailey could not be reached for comment.
His disqualification leaves Democrat Bob Jaeckin to run unopposed for the primary. Come November, Jaeckin will face either incumbent Republican Bruce Abens or Republican Michael Babet for the ward seat.
Bret Schuster and Harry Williamson Jr. both withdrew their candidacy for Lorain City Council president. The move leaves incumbent Joel Arredondo running unopposed for re-election.
Democrat Mallory Santiago also withdrew her name for Lorain Municipal Clerk of Courts, leaving democrat Jeffrey Bearer to challenge incumbent democrat Ted Kalo. Kalo is finishing Lori Maiorana’s unexpired term, after her resignation effective Jan. 1. Maiorana cited health reasons for her inability to complete her current term, which expires at the end of the year. Lorain Police Capt. Michael Failing confirmed Maiorana is under investigation.
The Board of Elections also rejected a local option failing to meet the signature requirements. A Sunday Sales option for Express Petro, 501 N. Abbe Road in Elyria needed 201 valid signatures but only garnered 156. Of the 321 signatures submitted, 70 were not registered voters, 18 were from voters whose listed address did not match their voter registration, 21 printed instead of signed their name, 51 were out of the precinct, four had no address and one was a duplicate.
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