A Russell County woman had a voting machine delivered to her home Thursday.
But she didn't ask for it, couldn't use it, and had no idea where it came from.
Investigators summoned about 2:30 p.m. to her home on County Line Road, off Alabama 169 north of Crawford, checked the device that had been dumped in her driveway, and soon got a general idea of where the touch-screen Diebold voting machine came from: Georgia.
Where in Georgia, they could not tell. Sheriff Tommy Boswell called Nancy Boren, Columbus' elections director, who checked the machine's serial numbers and quickly determined it did not belong in her inventory.
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Authorities contacted the Georgia Secretary of State's office, which agreed to send an investigator, Boswell said.
He said the machine appeared to have been out in the weather.
"It had bugs in it and had been wet on the bottom and so forth," said Boswell, by "bugs" meaning insects, not computer glitches. "The lady said it hadn't been where it was found but just two or three hours. But from the looks it's been somewhere exposed to the elements for a while."
Alabama uses paper optical-scan ballots, so investigators knew this one came from another state, he said.
Authorities said the machine had two metal keys used to unlock it and set it up, and it had a power cord. But it did not have a memory card that records votes, nor a key card programmed to display a ballot.
For more election news, visit www.ledger-enquirer.com/elections/.