CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- An incarcerated former Lincoln County commissioner is asking a federal judge to reduce or set aside his 21-month sentence for lying about altered absentee ballot applications, saying his attorney did not effectively represent him.
Thomas Ramey, who is currently representing himself, is serving his sentence in a federal correctional institution in Morgantown. He filed his case in the U.S. District Court in Charleston on Sept. 25.
He was sentenced last year for lying to FBI agents when he said he did not know who altered absentee ballot applications after they were filed in the County Clerk's Office for the Lincoln's 2010 Democratic primary. He later admitted to knowing who made the illegal alterations.
Before Ramey was sentenced, U.S. District Judge Thomas E. Johnston sentenced former Lincoln County clerk Donnie Whitten to 12 months and former sheriff Jerry Bowman to 18 months in prison for their roles in the scheme.
In a court filing, Ramey said that his attorney, Gregory Campbell, did not offer effective counsel. Ramey alleges he was told to expect no more than six months in prison if he pleaded guilty to making a false statement.
Other representations "regarding the sentence would prove to be false," Ramey alleged.
Campbell did not immediately return a phone message Monday night.
Ramey also argued that Secretary of State Natalie Tennant failed to do anything about inflated voter rolls in Lincoln County and that she did not rebuke Whitten for failing to attend necessary trainings, among other claims.