A teen from Florida and her mother has been accused of hacking a high school homecoming court election after allegedly casting fake ballots.
Emily Rose Grover, 17, and Laura Rose Carroll, 50, were arrested last Monday in Pensacola after investigators uncovered their alleged plot to tamper with the election at Tate High School so that the teen would win homecoming queen last fall.
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) revealed it opened its investigation back in November after officials with the Escambia County School District (ECSD) reported that hundreds of student accounts had been accessed without authorization.
Investigators alleged that Carroll, an assistant principal at Bellview Elementary School (which is part of ECSD) used her credentials to break into the accounts and cast votes for Emily, who won the title.
The two women were ultimately charged with an offense against users of computers, computer systems, computer networks, and electronic devices; unlawful use of a two-way communication device; criminal use of personally identified information; and conspiracy to commit the aforementioned offenses.
Carroll was booked into Escambia County Jail according to the FDLE statement — but records reveal she was released on $8,500 bond.
Emily was booked into the Escambia Regional Juvenile Detention Center.
Carroll’s husband stated: “We have no comment right now. Our lawyers told us not to speak and we will have our day in court.”
Carroll was booked into Escambia County Jail.
The scheme was revealed after Tate High School officials noticed that 117 votes for the homecoming court were cast from the same IP address within a short period of time.
Upon being contacted by ECSD, investigators found evidence of unauthorized access of student accounts on Carroll’s phone as well as home computers.
The agency said a total of nearly 250 fraudulent votes were cast, and that “multiple students reported that Carroll’s daughter described using her mother’s account to cast votes.”
The investigation also discovered that Carroll’s account allegedly accessed 372 high school records – 339 belonging to Tate students – beginning in August 2019.
In addition, Carroll was suspended from the ECSD for obvious reasons, a spokesperson told the Pensacola News Journal.
With a background in the creative and educational fields, Amelia Finefrock is freelance writer, singer-songwriter and nanny based in Chicago.
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