State of Colorado

Colorado Drop Box Challenge

DeOreo v. Fitzpatrick

Lawsuit filed by Colorado House of Representatives candidate William DeOreo (R) against the Boulder County clerk challenging the use of drop boxes in state House District 10. Specifically, DeOreo alleges that eight ballot drop boxes located throughout the District  “are not being monitored according to state law.” The plaintiff asserts that in accordance with state law and the rules of the secretary of state, county clerks must “adequately light all drop box locations and use a video surveillance recording system…to monitor each location.” The plaintiff argues that the Boulder County clerk is not adequately monitoring dropboxes to ensure that “no one is collecting and depositing more than the allowed 10 ballots per election.” In response to an inquiry by DeOreo, the county clerk responded that her only statutory duty is to notify law enforcement with information if someone tries to destroy, vandalize or tamper with a drop box. Unsatisfied with this response, DeOreo asks the court to declare that the county clerk must comply with the Colorado secretary of state’s rules to “properly monitor and surveil the remote boxes on a 24-hour basis” and to ensure that there is sufficient lighting, security and video coverage of the dropboxes. Throughout his complaint, the plaintiff raises unsubstantiated concerns about election security and notes that the vulnerabilities associated with drop boxes pose potential risks to the public, adding that “if the court rules that the boxes must be shut down there will be no damage done to the voters of HD10.” While DeOreo contends that dropboxes “are not essential for voting,” Colorado Secretary of State Jena Griswold has noted that “[a]pproximately 75% of Colorado mail ballot voters return their ballots to a drop box, which are safe and secure.”

Case Documents

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