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Colorado state Sen. Pete Lee indicted for allegedly lying about residence

By: - August 9, 2022 4:30 pm
Pete Lee

Sen. Pete Lee, a Colorado Springs Democrat, speaks on the Senate floor May 5, 2022. (Faith Miller/Colorado Newsline)

The chair of the state’s Senate Judiciary Committee was indicted Tuesday in the 4th Judicial District for allegedly lying about his official residence, a class 5 felony.

Sen. Pete Lee, whose full name is Sanford Edmund Lee, was charged with one count of providing false information as to his residence, the office of 4th Judicial District Attorney Michael Allen, a Republican, said in a release.

The Colorado Springs Democrat is set to appear in court on Sept. 8.

In a statement, Lee elaborated on the allegation: “(Allen) alleged that two years ago I violated the voter residence law for voting in a district where he claims I did not reside. There is no accusation of voting at more than one location.”

Lee said he had just received the charge and could not comment on the allegation.

A press release sent by Stimson LeBranche Hubbard, a Denver law firm, on Lee’s behalf contained more details. Allen charged Lee “with what he claims is voting on one occasion, over 2 years ago, in a district where he did not reside,” the press release says. “There are no allegations that Senator Lee submitted two ballots in a single election … (Lee) is proud to have voted on ballots appropriately obtained in order to exercise the sacred duty and honor of casting his ballot on issues of importance.”

The press release does not directly dispute the specific allegation but says, “The charge will be vigorously challenged.”

“Senator Pete Lee is a dedicated public servant who has spent his career supporting his community and working to improve the lives of all Coloradans. I trust he’ll have a fair opportunity to be heard and that the legal process will allow for an airing of all of the facts. At his request, Senator Lee has been removed from his interim committee assignments until this matter is resolved,” Senate President Steve Fenberg said in a statement.

Lee was first elected to the state House of Representatives in 2010 and was elected to the Senate in 2018.

Editor’s note: This story was updated at 8:22 p.m., 2022, to include a statement from Sen. Pete Lee.

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Sara Wilson
Sara Wilson

Sara Wilson covers state government, Colorado's congressional delegation, energy and other stories for Newsline. She formerly was a reporter for The Pueblo Chieftain, where she covered politics and government in southern Colorado. Wilson earned a master's degree in journalism from Northwestern University, and as a student she reported on Congress and other federal beats in Washington, D.C.

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