Nova Scotia

Ballot box stolen in New Glasgow

Voting was disrupted at a polling station in New Glasgow Monday when a man took off with a ballot box.

Voting was disrupted at a polling station in New Glasgow Monday when a man took off with a ballot box.

Just after noon, a man ran into polling station No. 81 in the town's stadium and tried to grab two boxes. An election official snatched one, but the man made it out with the other one under his arm.

"The suspect actually went to the parking area, placed the box down on the ground and actually used his own personal vehicle [and] drove over the Elections Canada box," said Const. Ken MacDonald, with New Glasgow police.

The man sped away, however, officers picked him a little while later.

Although the box was flattened, no ballots were destroyed. Scrutineers watched as the deputy returning officer transferred all of the ballots into a new box.

"She took them out and put them in a reconstituted ballot box and then continued with the election," said Dana Doiron, spokesperson for Elections Canada in the Maritimes.

A 57-year-old man is expected to face theft and property damage charges, as well as charges under the Canada Elections Act.

This is not the first time Elections Canada has had to deal with a stolen ballot box in this riding.

On election day in 2000 a man threw a ballot box containing 125 ballots into a lagoon in Pictou Landing, forcing all 125 people to vote a second time. Alexander James MacKenzie was later sentenced to 30 days house arrest and 100 hours of community service.