By Ava-joye Burnett

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — With most provisional ballots counted, Sheila Dixon has gained 485 votes on rival Catherine Pugh — only 20 percent of what she needs to close the gap.

There are more votes to count. Activists gathered Thursday night to document problems at the polls.

WJZ Investigator Mike Hellgen explains a citizen group is urging people who had trouble voting to document the problems.

Election workers have already counted thousands of provisional ballots in Baltimore City’s primary, with thousands more votes left to tally.

Meantime, activists continue to push the state prosecutor to investigate fraud on election day.

“I personally live in the 6th District. They tried to force me to vote in the 5th District,” said Pam Curtis-Massey, voter.

Curtis-Massey is one of several who had problems that an activist group has already presented to the prosecutor.

Langston Hughes Elementary is the polling place where activists say voters had the most problems. Some were turned away or given the wrong ballots. They claim a Dixon campaign worker was allowed to serve as an election judge.

The group also alleges another Sheila Dixon worker was allowed to scan ballots at the Jewish Community Center polling place. They claim Dixon’s sister had to use a provisional ballot because someone voted in her name.

Dixon has been closely monitoring the count, where she’s narrowed the gap with rival Catherine Pugh by 485 votes. Pugh still leads by more than 2,500.

“A lot of people are upset. This election has been so different than any other election,” said Dixon on Wednesday.

Here’s what’s next: counting resumes Friday with the remaining provisional and absentee ballots. The final results are expected to be certified Friday afternoon.

Even then, possible legal challenges await, and candidates could demand a recount — but depending on the margins, they may have to pay the cost themselves.

A Pugh lawyer tells WJZ the campaign believes she’ll still come out the winner.

Stay with WJZ for the latest on the developing numbers as the Board of Election continues to count.

Ava-joye Burnett


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