Woodmansee withdraws request for absentee ballot

By Wjar Staff

Two members of the Cranston board of canvassers were sworn in Tuesday afternoon after two members resigned rather than sign an absentee ballot for a convicted child killer.

Michael Woodmansee, who was convicted of killing 5-year-old Jason Foreman in 1975, sent a letter to the board earlier Tuesday withdrawing his request.

Canvassers Chairman Jospeh DeLorenzo had refused to sign the application and resigned, along with one other member of the board. The state board of elections said that anyone who hinders the voting process could be subject to prosecution.

Woodmansee was released from prison last year after serving less than 29 years of a 40-year sentence, but he agreed to commit himself to Eleanor Slater Hospital.

The two newly sworn-in board members, Gary Vierra and Cindy Fogarty, each said they would have signed the ballot.

"I believe I would have. I spend the last day researching Rhode Island law, the statutes, and the decision from the Board of Elections. The status of the current law in Rhode Island is that he could," Fogarty said.

One of the new members was nominated by the Democratic party, the other by Republicans, and both were approved by the City Council.

There are two other convicted killers at the state hospital that have requested ballots, and the state Board of Elections ruled four years ago that they are entitled to them.

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