News Release

Cherokee Nation

The Cherokee Nation Attorney General’s office added five new charges of false personation against a Tahlequah woman initially charged last month in tribal court with one count of election fraud and one count of false personation.

According to the Cherokee Nation Attorney General’s office, five new charges of false personation were recently filed against Lisa Cookson in tribal court.

Cookson was arrested on May 4 and later released on bond. She appeared in Cherokee Nation tribal court for her initial appearance on Tuesday. Cookson pleaded not guilty.

According to an investigative report from the Attorney General’s office to the Cherokee Nation Election Commission, Cookson was volunteering for District 2 Tribal Council candidate Bobby Slover’s campaign for the June 5 Cherokee Nation general election. Cookson is charged with fraudulently preparing, altering, and signing more than 90 absentee ballot request forms that were presented to the Cherokee Nation Election Commission without the knowledge or consent of voters between January and April of 2021.

Among the 14 witnesses to the alleged crimes listed in the amended criminal complaint is District 2 candidate for Cherokee Nation Council Bobby Slover, Venita Jo Slover and former Tribal Council member David Walkingstick.

“The Cherokee Nation Attorney General’s Office takes election fraud allegations very seriously. It remains vitally important that tribal election laws are enforced in order to protect the rights of Cherokee Nation citizens and to uphold the integrity of our electoral process,” Attorney General Sara Hill said.

Election fraud and false personation is punishable by up to three years for each count, and a maximum fine of $15,000.

Cookson is scheduled for another court appearance on August 10.

About Cherokee Nation

The Cherokee Nation is the federally recognized government of the Cherokee people and has inherent sovereign status recognized by treaty and law. The seat of tribal government is the W.W. Keeler Complex near Tahlequah, Oklahoma, the capital of the Cherokee Nation. With more than 390,000 citizens, 11,000 employees and a variety of tribal enterprises ranging from aerospace and defense contracts to entertainment venues, Cherokee Nation is one of the largest employers in northeastern Oklahoma and is among the largest tribal nations in the United States.

To learn more, please visit www.cherokee.org.

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