RICHMOND, Va. (WVEC) — A judge who ruled to strike a Congressional candidate's name from the 2nd District ballot said in a court opinion Thursday that Shaun Brown's petition contained "forgery, perjury, fraud, and significant material, sophomoric errors."
Brown was running as an independent candidate in the competitive 2nd Congressional District, hoping to face off against Republican incumbent Scott Taylor and Democratic nominee Elaine Luria.
Richmond Circuit Court Judge Gregory Rupe's decision to keep Brown off the ballot came after he heard arguments in a lawsuit filed by Democrats that accused members of Taylor's campaign staff of forging signatures. Democrats claimed Taylor's campaign wanted Brown on the 2nd District ballot to weaken support for Luria and bolster his own re-election chances.
But Judge Rupe went even further, saying each page of Brown's petition was invalid because her address is wrong on all of them. He disqualified petitions and signatures collected by not only Taylor's staff, but by Brown herself.
Brown told reporters she would appeal.
Taylor has said he knew his staff was circulating petitions for Brown, but he denounced the use of false signatures.
A special prosecutor is conducting a separate criminal investigation.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.