Elections officials called to testify in Youngstown mayoral candidate’s complaint

Sean McKinney alleges that November's election was fraudulent and that people voted illegally

On Monday, Sean McKinney issued a release stating he's running for Youngstown Mayor in November.


YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Sean McKinney’s lawyer will not be taking depositions Thursday and Friday in the Mahoning County election fraud case. This comes after he learned Wednesday that most of the people he planned to question will file motions to quash the subpoenas.

Attorney Don Brey told First News 12 of the 14 people he subpoenaed planned to ask the court not to be questioned.

Among those subpoenaed were mayor-elect Tito Brown, along with Joyce Kale-Pesta, Tom McCabe and Dave Betras from the Mahoning County Board of Elections.

McKinney wants the election overturned and new election held.

Listed in the notice to give testimony at the hearing are the following:

  • John Kennedy
  • Chris Rakocy
  • Jenny Ditzler
  • Sandra McCabe
  • Joseph Rakocy, Jr.
  • James Smith
  • Mike Sciortino
  • David Ditzler
  • Carol Rimedio-Righetti
  • Lisa Antonini
  • David Betras

McKinney and his legal team have also ordered Kale-Pesta and McCabe to bring 25 different types of documents related to the election. Documents requested include the list of voters who submitted absentee ballots and those who were disqualified.

Jamael Tito Brown defeated McKinney in the race for Youngstown mayor by 198 votes, according to the Board of Elections. McKinney said that election was fraudulent, however.

McKinney claims that 125 people may have somehow voted illegally. Some residents were denied the right to vote, while those in nursing homes with poor mental capacity were given provisional ballots, he said.

“We have heard about people in nursing homes being used as political pawns. People who can’t even ask for a glass of water but somehow requested an absentee ballot,” he said.

Mayor-elect Tito Brown denied going to any nursing homes.

McKinney wants a new election overseen by the Ohio Secretary of State. He has already asked for an internal investigation by the Mahoning County Board of Elections into November’s miscount.

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