More Persecution of Conservative Judges of Election - Arrested for Perjury

December 10, 1870


In what the conservatives are calling an act of Radical persecution, a Conservative Judge has been arrested for a violation of the Enforcement act on the day of December 9th. The judge allegedly took a ballot box during elections, and swapped it out for a different ballot box. This action deprived many of their right to exercise their elective franchise.


Yesterday morning another attempt was made to overawe the judges of election on the plea of a violation of the Enforcement Act. Mr. W. F. Rogers, one of the judges at the second precinct of Jefferson Ward, was, for the second time within a week, the victim of Radical persecution. The arrest was made by a deputy marshal, and the charge is thus stated in the warrant:"That W.F. Rogers, one of the judges of the election at the second precinct of Jefferson Ward, in the city of Richmond, did, on or about the 9th day of December, 1870, take the ballot of him, the said J. D. Peters, a colored man, and legal voters in said precinct and ward, and instead of putting the ballot in the ballot-box, dropped it on the floor, and put in another and different ballot, and thus deprived him, the said Peters, of the exercise of his elective franchise."Mr. Rogers was at once carried before Commissioner Jenkins, and his counsel, Gen. Bradley T. Johnson, insisted upon his having an immediate examination, but the Commissioner preferred to put it off until Monday. The accused being already under bonds, was released on his own recognizance.The arrest was a serious matter to the citizens of Richmond, in view of the fact that the polls at the precinct where the offence is alleged to have been committed had to be closed until Mr. Rogers went to the Custom-house with the Marshal and returned. The time thus consumed was not less than an hour and a half, and many voters came to the polls and went away, not being able to deposit their ballots in the absence of the Judge. Have no Commissioner Jenkins and Marshal Leahy committed an offence indictable under the Enforcement Act in thus preventing citizens from the exercise of the right of suffrage. Later in the day the negro who obtained the warrant for the arrest of Mr. Rogers was arrested on the charge of perjury by Captain James M. Tyler and Detective John Wrenn. He gave his name as James D. Peters, and appears on the registration list as a "book-keeper," aged 30. His real employment, as we are informed, is that of a "jug" dealer, or a lottery-policy vender. He was locked up in a cell at the first police station, and will have a hearing before the Police Court this morning.
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Travis Terry




“More Persecution of Conservative Judges of Election - Arrested for Perjury,” Reconstructing Virginia, accessed February 1, 2023,