VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. - Another former campaign staffer for former Congressman Scott Taylor's 2018 campaign has been indicted on an election fraud charge. The indictment came down in Virginia Beach Circuit Court Tuesday.
In an interview with News 3, Defense Attorney Richard Doummar said Heather Guillot worked for Taylor during his re-election campaign. He says the charges stem from an alleged petition scandal two years ago.
Doummar says his client is saddened and says this has been a black cloud hanging over her head.
"The timing certainly seems a little coincidental. Let’s say that obviously my client is disappointed that the grand jury came down with this indictment today," he said.
Doummar says Guillot has gotten out of politics. He says she plans to plead not guilty and turn herself in tomorrow.
Taylor's campaign released a statement on the indictment saying:
"Former, 2018 campaign staff made poor, unethical decisions two years ago. Unethical decisions that Scott Taylor would never condone or permit. Scott Taylor had no knowledge of any wrongdoing and has never been under investigation, as Scott was told by the special agent investigating with the Virginia State Police: “in no way are you being looked at as any type of suspect.” Those involved in any illicit behavior can and should be held accountable.
But since 2018, the attorneys appointed to this investigation have unfortunately been more preoccupied with political justice or “poetic justice” than actual justice. Stalling the judicial process and pursuing justice on a politically convenient timeline is unprofessional and disturbing. It is a sad reality that this prosecutor’s actions are dictated by a political agenda, rather than a dutiful responsibility to pursue truth and justice in a timely manner.
It is disappointing to see the democrat prosecutor conduct a political witch hunt in an effort to distract voters away from the real issues facing the 2nd District, such as Elaine Luria’s unaccountable constituent record during a pandemic and bad-for-business voting record."
In May 2019, campaign staffer Lauren Creekmore, now Lauren Creekmore Peabody, was indicted on two felony charges for election fraud. As we previously reported, Creekmore helped collect signatures to get an Independent candidate, Shaun Brown, on the ballot in the summer of 2018. A special prosecutor said her actions violated Virginia law.
In March of this year, Peabody pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of willful neglect. She was sentenced to one year in jail and fined $2,500, but a judge suspended the year of jail time and $1,500 of the fine on the condition of a year of good behavior.
Taylor lost his re-election bid to incumbent Rep. Elaine Luria in November 2018. They will face off for the seat in Virginia's 2nd House District once again in November.