A criminal investigation could be initiated in connection to an attempted break-in of a warehouse used by Maricopa County’s election department, according to a county spokesperson.
The incident came to light Saturday after Staci Burk posted several photos to social media claiming that shredded ballots were discovered in a dumpster outside the warehouse. The group’s activities were captured by a surveillance camera, said Megan Gilbertson, the election department’s communication director.
“The fact is, these individuals were dumpster diving on Maricopa County property,” Gilbertson said. “Security footage shows they attempted to break into the warehouse entrance of the Elections Department on Saturday with a board from the dumpster. Maricopa County plans to follow up with law enforcement about these activities.”
Burk’s assertions that the shredded ballots were connected to the 2020 General Election received swift pushback from Gilbertson.
“Maricopa County has not, and would never destroy voted ballots until legally authorized to do so after the 24-month retention period,” Gilbertson said, adding that official ballots are stored in a vault, not the warehouse. “The vault is under the watch of a 24-7 camera.”
Gilbertson also stated that no election materials from the vault were in the dumpster. As to the fact some items were found in the dumpsters, she explained that “as a matter of business, the county can and does throw out trash.”
Maricopa County Recorder Stephen Richer also commented Saturday that his office does not use the yellow bag seen in Burk’s photos.
Burk attracted scrutiny in December 2020 when she filed a lawsuit in Pinal County Superior Court in an unsuccessful legal challenge the result of Maricopa County’s election results. The case was quickly dismissed.
In her lawsuit, Burk claimed a man admitted having information about “illegal ballots” being unloaded from a plane at Sky Harbor Airport and that he threatened her life due to Burk’s attempts to uncover election misconduct.
Burk even posted to her personal Facebook page at the time that a personal security team had been “mobilized by (former National Security Advisor) General Mike Flynn at my house” as a result of the threat.
Nothing that sinister was suggested by Burk’s recent posts on March 6 which included dozens of images of what she claims are the remnants of election ballots.
“Ballots shredded and in dumpsters behind the Maricopa County Ballot tabulation center,” she posted. “Physical evidence collected. Went to three different dumps after that tracking down the other bags.”
Some of the photos show a man, who Burk identified as a “Purple Heart Vet,” inside of one of the dumpsters. “Wrapped up physical evidence collection with a Purple Heart Vet willing to dumpster dive for his Country,” she posted.
Another Burk post alleged that boxes of ballots were visible and readily accessible through an open warehouse door without any security presence. “I was there for 10 minutes or so and no one was around at all,” she posted. “I could have easily grabbed some boxes.”