The 44-year-old founder of Black Lives Matter Memphis was sentenced to a half-dozen years behind bars for illegally registering to vote after she pleaded guilty to various felonies in 2015.
Pamala Moses illegally voted six times after she pled guilty to charges including evidence tampering, perjury, forgery, stalking, and theft under $500 just seven years ago, the Daily Mail reported on Sunday.
Now, however, the BLM activist says she did not know she was still on probation, which lasted for seven years, and thought that she had her voting rights reinstated in 2019.
“I did not falsify anything. All I did was try to get my rights to vote back the way the people at the election commission told me and the way the clerk did,” she told the court at her sentencing hearing Jan. 26.
But Judge Mark Ward accused Moses of “tricking the probation department” in order to illegally regain her voting rights.
“You tricked the probation department into giving you documents saying you were off probation. After you were convicted of a felony in 2015, you voted six times as a convicted felon,” Ward said, according to the Daily Mail.
Moses responded by claiming that when she was convicted in 2015, no one informed her that she had lost her right to vote.
The outlet notes further:
The University of Tennessee graduate, who received a degree in political science from the school, found out she was still on probation in 2019 and after trying to run for mayor. After a judge confirmed it, she visited a probations officer to make sure [that] her probation was correct. The officer then provided the activist with a certification of completion, which she turned in to receive her right to vote.
The mother-of-two told the Guardian last year: ‘They never mentioned anything about voting. They never mentioned anything about not voting, being able to vote…none of that.’
At the time, Tennessee authorities should have taken her off the rolls, but Memphis officials never received the paperwork, the Guardian reported.
She said she became aware of the issue when she attempted to run for Memphis mayor in 2019 and was informed that she could not run because of her felonies. But at that time, officials realized, too, that she had not been taken off registered voter lists (and isn’t it ironic that Democrats in Congress are pushing ‘voting reform’ legislation that would make it illegal for local county officials to purge voter registration lists).
Moses, an activist and a musician, then went back to court to see if she was still on probation. After that, she went to the probation office to have officials confirm her sentence, “as she believed it was too long, and an officer signed a certificate saying her probation had ended,” the Daily Mail reported.
But a few days later, The Guardian noted, a corrections officer contacted an elections official by email and said that, in actuality, Moses’ probationary period was still in effect and thus she was still ineligible to vote.
During her trial last month, prosecutors argued that Moses still knew she was on probation when she submitted the certificate as a judge had recently informed her at the time she was ineligible.
“Even knowing that order denied her expiration of sentence, Pamela Moses submitted that form with her application for voter registration and signed an oath as to the accuracy of the information submitted,” prosecutors noted. “Pamela Moses knowingly made or consented to a false entry on her permanent registration.”
According to The Grio, a black-centric publication, Moses has been convicted of merely “registering to vote,” which is patently false, according to the court.
Her sentence is being appealed by the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, which argued that the U.S. has “two sentencing systems.”
Sure it does: One for the political elite in D.C. and one for the rest of us, as Donald Trump’s presidential term demonstrated.