Trump supporter ordered to leave Akron polling site

A Donald Trump supporter says he was threatened with arrest while working a polling location in a predominately Democratic neighborhood in Akron.

Ian Erne told Channel 3 News today that he was at the Helen Arnold Community Learning Center and was passing out Summit County GOP slate voting cards when he clashed with Democrats at the location.

Erne said he was outside the restricted zone and was handing his cards to voters.

On several occasions, he said, a Democratic Party worker took the card from the voter and handed the voter a Democratic candidate card.

Erne said he called Akron police on three occasions.

It was after the third call that officers ordered him to leave.

“They said you have 10 seconds to leave or you will be arrested,” Erne said.

Akron police confirmed they were called to the scene. No reports were immediately available.

In one of his 911 calls, Erne expresses fear.

“This is my second time calling, please do not make it the third, I may not have a chance to make it a third,” Erne said in the 911 audio recording.

In an interview later, Erne did not back down.

“It was clearly voter intimidation,” Erne said.

Erne, 45, said he was asked to leave the polling location after he allegedly broke the barrier boundaries for volunteers handing out materials at the location.

 
“While they were standing in line, I did go up to them and politely gave them a… slate card, I did not ask them to vote any certain way,” Erne said.
 
Erne said that officials from the Summit County Board of Elections initially told him he was standing the appropriate distance from the center. 
 
“The board of election people, arrived, they informed me that I had to be a hundred feet away from the building, in order to pass out slate cards,” Erne said.
 
However, while distributing cards, someone began to take pictures of Erne and he called 911. 
 
Erne said he called 911 again and when officers arrive he was was told he must leave the premises after violating the boundary areas.
 
It was then, that police allegedly told Erne he had 10 seconds to remove himself from the area and that he was not permitted to return to any other polling locations in Akron. 
 
After the incident, Erne claimed he contacted several other news agencies to express his concern. He also said he felt “threatened” during the alleged exchange. 
 
“You’re telling me that I was out of bounds over there, but I was just waiting for them because there was two Democratic slate people handing out things,” Erne said, referencing that there were other Democratic volunteers in the same area.

 


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