Philadelphia Man Pleads Guilty to Forgery Scheme to Get Clients on Primary Election Ballot in 2019

March 30, 2023 | Topic: Criminal

Rasheen Crews Perpetrated Forgeries of Thousands of Signatures on Nominating Petitions for 2019 Democratic Primary Races in Philadelphia

HARRISBURG – Attorney General Michelle Henry today announced that Rasheen Crews, a Philadelphia political consultant, pleaded guilty to charges related to forging signatures on nomination petitions to get his clients on the ballot for the 2019 Democratic primary races in Philadelphia.

Crews, 46, was hired by multiple candidates to help obtain signatures on nomination petitions. Investigators determined that Crews orchestrated the forgery of thousands of signatures.

Crews pleaded guilty Thursday to Criminal Solicitation to Commit Forgery and Theft By Failure to Make Required Disposition. He will be sentenced on June 29, 2023.

“This guilty plea serves as a reminder that my office will protect every citizen’s right to a free and fair election process,” said AG Henry. “This defendant thought he could undermine that process by soliciting and organizing the wide-scale forgery of signatures to get his clients on the ballot.”

An investigation by the Office of Attorney General found that in 2019, multiple candidates hired Crews to help them obtain the requisite amount of signatures needed for their nominating petitions for the Democratic primary races. Crews recruited individuals to help with the petition work, bringing them to a hotel room and asking them to write names, addresses, and forged signatures on multiple petitions. Crews then had these petitions notarized and filed with the Pennsylvania Department of State on behalf of his clients.

Of the petitions that were reviewed, over 1,000 signatures were determined to be duplicated. Many names and addresses were found repeated on various petition pages, some pages appeared to be photocopied entirely, and some of the listed individuals claimed to have never signed the petitions in question.

Due to the questions around the petition signatures, some candidates withdrew entirely from the election.

This matter is being prosecuted by Senior Deputy Attorney General Thomas Ost-Prisco.

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