Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

Virginia State News

November 5, 2012

Va. man exonerated of '78 rape can cast ballot

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — A Charles City area man exonerated of a 1978 wrongful rape conviction is regaining his right to vote.

Bennett Barbour thought he was eligible to vote after the Virginia Supreme Court exonerated him in May. But Gov. Bob McDonnell must restore his voting rights because he has other, less-serious felony convictions.

Barbour also owes court costs in Henrico County and fees to the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles.

Supporters of the 57-year-old Barbour raised funds Friday and Saturday to pay the court costs.

McDonnell spokesman Tucker Martin tells The Richmond Times-Dispatch (http://bit.ly/YuwUrS ) that Barbour will be able to vote once the court fees are paid on Monday.

Martin also says the governor waived the unpaid DMV fees.

Barbour's lawyers say he plans to vote in Tuesday's general election.

___

Information from: Richmond Times-Dispatch, http://www.timesdispatch.com

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