Chatham Co. elections board member resigns amid police investigation

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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – A member of the Chatham County Board of Elections has resigned amid a police investigation into whether she struck an off-duty poll worker with her vehicle on Tuesday at the Savannah Civic Center.

The email Debbie Rauers sent to fellow board members early Thursday morning makes no mention of the ongoing investigation.

Board member Antwan Lang says, “I think that we have to, in some way, give the benefit of the doubt to Ms. Rauers in terms of understanding that the case is still under investigation.”

Lang says since the incident Rauers, a Republican, has received threats.

“We cannot have elected officials being threatened, especially with the type of atmosphere that we’re in politically and in the community,” he said.

According to the incident report from the Savannah Police Department, a woman matching Rauers’s description tried parking a dark blue sedan in a spot that another woman was saving for a food truck. The truck and the parking space had been approved by the city.

The report says the driver of the sedan got annoyed and identified herself as an election official. The women argued, and the alleged election official, “angrily jerked her car forward,” bumping the other woman’s legs. She was not injured.

News 3 has reached out to Rauers, who has not responded, to clarify details of the incident including whether she gave a false name to the woman who reported the incident to police, specifically that of fellow elections board member Malinda Hodge.

Lang says the allegations are deeply disturbing.

“Regardless of whether she said Linda or Malinda,” he said, “she still didn’t tell the bystanders who she was personally, other than by stating she was a member of the board of elections.”

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