Ware: We want to make sure this is accurate and complete - WDAM-TV 7-News, Weather, Sports-Hattiesburg, MS

Ware: We want to make sure this is an accurate and complete count


After nearly 36 hours of counting votes, verifying affidavit ballots, and inquiring about an unlocked front door at city hall after hours, Johnny DuPree came out on top in his bid for a fourth term.

DuPree defeated challenger Dave Ware by 37 votes, but the race appears to be far from over.

DuPree led Ware by 33 votes following Tuesday night's general election. It took several hours to verify and count 115 affidavit ballots.

In the end, only 47 of those ballots counted. The rest were rejected. DuPree received 25 of the votes while Ware had 21.

But the day was not absent of drama. A few voters who feared their votes were not counted showed up at city hall.

"I saw on WDAM's Facebook page that a concerned citizen came to check her affidavit, and I wanted to do the same, because I haven't heard anything," Marshall McAllister said. "I've asked two different people, and nobody's been able to tell me anything."

During the lunch hour, the voting stopped as the very last ballot refused to scan. Members of the resolution board were summoned to City Hall to verify the ballot that was rejected by the machine. After the final cote tally was announced, Ware said he will seek to have all the ballot boxes examined.

According to state law, Ware has 12 days to file a written request to examine the boxes.

"Certainly, at the end of the day, we want to make sure this is an accurate and complete count of the votes. And so this is a process that we're going through at this time and that process is ongoing. Next for us is to look and see what the statutes actually say about what our rights are," Ware said.

Mayor Dupree is in New York with his family until next week.

According to state law, the mayor will be officially sworn in on the first Tuesday in July.

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