TUPELO, Miss. (WTVA) — The attorney for Tupelo Councilwoman Nettie Davis said he hopes the district attorney has enough common sense not to charge her for what people saw on a Facebook video prior to the June 8 general election.
In that video of a political event, Davis asked for $100 donations and said the money would be given after the election to people who voted. She said the cash winners would be determined by drawing names.
Attorney Jim Waide said his client would never intentionally break the law and she was just trying to boost the Black vote, which had been historically low.
"So she was doing just exactly what should be expected, what other leaders were doing to try to encourage people to try to get out and vote, and she should be commended for that," said Waide. "They ought to be giving her an award instead of attacking her in the media."
Davis declined to comment about the controversy Monday after multiple attempts by WTVA 9 News seeking a response. She referred a reporter during an encounter at City Hall to Waide.
The Ward 4 Democrat was unopposed in the general election, winning a sixth term on the City Council.
District Attorney John Weddle said in a written statement on the day before the election he takes election fraud seriously and would handle this case aggressively.
It is unclear whether he will charge Davis, which her attorney said could be done by Weddle himself or by a grand jury.
Secretary of State Michael Watson pointed out prior to the election that it is illegal for anyone to put up cash or prizes to get people to vote or not vote.
According to state law, a candidate convicted of a violation, which is a misdemeanor, would face fines and be disqualified from an election or removed from an elected office.