Florida assistant principal, daughter allegedly hacked student accounts to rig homecoming queen votes

Officials finally found voter fraud in Florida — in a high school homecoming queen race.

Laura Rose Carroll, an assistant principal at Bellview Elementary School in Pensacola, and daughter Emily Rose Grover, a student at Tate High School, allegedly hacked into dozens of student accounts to cast fake votes to elect Emily as homecoming queen last fall, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement said Monday.

The school district flagged hundreds of fake votes for the Tate homecoming queen race in October; at least 117 of those originated from the same IP address in a “short period of time,” according to the FDLE.

Investigators traced the votes back to Carroll’s cell phone and computers, which showed unauthorized access to students’ FOCUS accounts.

Laura Rose Carroll was arrested Monday.
Laura Rose Carroll was arrested Monday. (Escambia County Jail)

Multiple students told investigators that Emily, 17, had used her mother’s district-level security account to cast 246 votes for herself.

Emily was named Tate High School homecoming queen in October, beating out runners-up Arlyana Wyatt and Kendall Blackmon, according to NorthEscambia.com.

Carroll has been suspended from her job, Escambia County School District Superintendent Tim Smith told the Pensacola News Journal.

Emily has been expelled from Tate High School.

Both Carroll and Emily were charged with one count each of offenses against users of computers, computer systems, computer networks, and electronic devices, unlawful use of a two-way communications device, criminal use of personally identifiable information and conspiracy to commit these offenses.

Carroll was booked into the Escambia County Jail Monday afternoon and released on an $8,500 bond. Emily was taken to the Escambia Regional Juvenile Detention Center.

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