Pamela Moses, a 44-year-old Black Memphis activist who was convicted in November for trying to register to vote while she was ineligible, was sentencing this week to six years and one day in prison, The Guardian reports. Prosecutor Amy Weirich has featured the case in press releases, noting that Moses has an extensive criminal record, including pleaded guilty to perjury and tampering with evidence in connection to allegations that she stalked and harassed a judge. Still on probation, Moses tried to register to vote in 2019. Tennessee officials conceded that they had made a series of mistakes concerning Moses’ voting eligibility.
Moses says that in 2015, when she pleaded guilty to her felony, no one told her she couldn’t vote. Election officials should have removed her from the rolls, but the court never sent election officials in Memphis the documents they needed to do so. Moses didn’t know anything was amiss until 2019, when she launched a long-shot mayoral campaign. Election officials said she couldn’t appear on the ballot because of her felony. Moses then determined that her probation had ended, but the state corrections department said a probation officer had made an error in saying that. The state said Moses was still serving an active felony sentence and was not eligible to vote. Such errors are common in Tennessee, where the voting rules are extremely confusing for people with felonies,