The man who allegedly torched a ballot box in Boston has been arrested — and he doesn’t appear to have been “plotting against our democracy,” prosecutors said Monday.
Worldy Armand, 39, was charged with willful and malicious burning for Sunday’s blaze outside the Boston public library’s main branch, Suffolk County District Attorney Rachael Rollins said.
“I do not believe that this individual is plotting against our democracy,” Rollins told reporters, according to The Boston Globe.
“I think he is emotionally disturbed, is what I am told.”
Local officials, including Massachusetts Secretary of State William Galvin and Boston Mayor Marty Walsh, had blasted the act a “disgrace to democracy” and asked the FBI to investigate.
Rollins herself had described the fire as a “crime against democracy” in a tweet earlier on Monday.
The top prosecutor indicated that she doesn’t think the incident rises to the level of a federal crime.
“If this were somebody with the facts maybe being a little bit different, there could potentially be a federal charge. We believe that this was the act of an individual that we have jurisdiction over,” she said.
About 35 ballots were damaged in the fire, and of those, five to 10 were unreadable, Galvin told the Globe in an interview.
Voters who used the ballot box between Saturday afternoon and 4 a.m. Sunday and can’t confirm online whether their ballot was processed should contact the Boston Elections Department, officials said.
Those whose ballots were affected by the fire can either vote in person or by a replacement ballot that will be mailed to them. If they don’t “their original ballot will be hand-counted to the extent possible,” Galvin’s office said.
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