4 Sentenced for Election Day Tire Slashing

Gretchen Ehlke, AP, April 26, 2006

MILWAUKEE—A congresswoman’s son and three Democratic campaign workers were sentenced Wednesday to four to six months in jail for slashing tires outside a Bush-Cheney campaign office on Election Day 2004.

The men pleaded no contest in January to misdemeanor property damage. A fifth worker was found not guilty.

“This case had to be a public example of what can happen when you interfere with voters’ rights,” said Milwaukee County Circuit Judge Michael Brennan, who rejected prosecutors’ recommendation of probation for the four men.

The state Republican Party had rented more than 100 vehicles to give rides to voters and poll monitors on Nov. 2, 2004. The cars were parked outside a GOP campaign office when the tires were punctured. The vandalism left the drivers scrambling for new vehicles.

Among those sentenced Wednesday were Sowande A. Omokunde, the son of U.S. Rep. Gwen Moore, D-Wisconsin, and Michael Pratt, the son of former acting Milwaukee Mayor Marvin Pratt.

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