Metro Detroit man faces five years in jail for filling out daughter's absentee ballot

Metro Detroit man arrested for filling out daughter's ballot
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A Canton Township man is facing criminal charges after the Michigan attorney general said the 47-year-old completed, signed and turned in his daughter's absentee ballot.

He could spend up to five years in jail.

Paul Parana was arraigned on charges of forging a signature on an absentee ballot and impersonating another person for the purpose of voting. His ballot was voided, and officials did not say who he had voted for, who turned him in or how they spotted the discrepancy. Also unknown is whether his daughter asked him to fill out the ballot for her.

Joe Biden beat Donald Trump by more than 13,000 votes in suburban Canton, which is inside Wayne County. Results show 35,000 votes for Biden and 21,506 for Trump.

As officials scour for any evidence of voter fraud amid President Donald Trump's broad claims that the entire election was rigged and fraudulent, this and a second case in Canton are so far the first and only evidence of fraud. In two Canton allegations of fraud, one of the alleged violators was the husband of a woman who resides in an assisted-living facility in Livonia; the second -- Parana -- is the father of a woman who lives out of state, officials said.

"People should be reassured that we are able to see the red flags that lead to fraudulent voting," Canton Clerk Michael Siegrist told Hometown Life. "We have safeguards in place that protect the voting process."

Anyone with allegations of voter fraud is encouraged to contact the Michigan Attorney General's Office at 517-335-7622.

“Signing someone else’s name to a ballot is a felony under state law, and spreading misinformation to purposefully interfere with our election and ballot-counting processes is criminal behavior that will not be tolerated," Attorney General Dana Nessel said in a press release. "Michigan has multiple layers of review throughout our election process that make it very difficult for a bad actor to commit fraud, which is why it so seldom occurs.”

Parana was arraigned Friday in 35th District Court in Plymouth. His next court appearance is a probable cause conference set for Nov. 20, followed by a preliminary hearing on Nov. 30.