Halfaday arrested: Ex-candidate charged with falsifying address

Former Democratic City Council candidate James Halfaday was charged October 19 with four felony counts of election fraud for allegedly using a false address to certify his candidacy with the registrar.

"I am not guilty of these charges," says Halfaday in a written statement. "I ask that no one judge me before I have had my day in court. Until the cases are completed, I will have no further comments." Halfaday did not respond to a phone call from the Hook.

A Hook investigation in September discovered that Halfaday did not reside at 2423 Sunset Road, the Charlottesville address he used when filing for Council, according to the occupants currently living there. Another more recent address associated with Halfaday, 1248 Richmond Road, is in Albemarle County.

The Hook also discovered that a number of contributors Halfaday listed as having donated $499 to his campaign said they had never given him money.

"I can't say whether additional charges will be filed," says Deputy Commonwealth's Attorney Claude Worrell. "The investigation is still under way."

In an increasingly bizarre series of events after Halfaday placed last in the August 20 Democratic primary, he accused a campaign worker for another candidate of violating an emergency protective order he'd filed against her.

He also claimed to have been injured in the recent 5.8 earthquake centered in Louisa, and posted a photo of himself on Facebook wearing a neck collar. If true, that would have made him the only person to report being injured in Charlottesville by the August 23 event.

The injury claim nearly coincided with the announcement by a lawyer hired by the true owners of Snap Fitness gym that Halfaday was not an owner of the facility, as he'd claimed throughout his campaign. No charges will be filed for the allegedly bogus business ownership claim, according to Worrell.

Each of the counts carries up a maximum $2,500 fine and/or up to 10 years in prison. Halfaday was released on a personal recognizance bond, says Worrell, and is scheduled to appear in court October 20.

Update October 20: Halfaday goes to trial December 15.

Read more on: james halfaday

40 comments

Good job by The Hook! It was your reporting that led to an investigation by law enforcement. It seems we are all safer with this guy in jail. Don't you wonder what else he has been lying about in the other parts of his life?

Reader - he will never serve, he was released on a personal recognizance bond.

But he wanted all to believe his "harrassment" charge/claims without the other party having their day in court? Isn't that just amazing? Sounds like a true politician! I just wish The Hook didn't have to give him this "press time", he enjoys every moment of it.

It would do him good to be thrown in the slammer for a while. This guy has marred and stolen from the election process in Charlottesville.

Did it take a SWAT team to make the arrest?

Let's give the devil his due, here. The Hook claims that if Jim's claim about earthquake injury is true, then, he is "the only person injured in Charlottesville by the August 23 event." How can the Hook know this, until the paper has interviewed everyone in C'ville? They can't, nor can anyone else. The most we can assume is that Jim is the only one to have reported an injury that came to the attention of the press. Then again, maybe the Hook DOES have verifiable information that Jim is the only one. If so, let's see it, please.

Meanwhile, Jim himself has, evidently, been his own worst enemy.

He will, no doubt, be a nonstarter when it comes to the council elections.. 'Nuff said.

They only use special weapons and tactics on people growing 2 pot plants and retired deputy sheriffs! Somebody like Halfaday, 4 felonies with more pending possible, gets a phone call asking him to come on in voluntarily for service of the warrants. No helicopters. No show of force with automatic weapons locked and loaded. No cops sneaking around his house attempting to peep in the windows. No marching him to a police car in handcuffs while all of his neighbors are watching.

After he got to the jail for purposes of a bond hearing in front of the magistrate, I wonder if the cops copied every piece of ID and credit cards he had in his wallet? If they did I would suggest to Halfaday that he immediately cancels them immediately and has them replaced.

What election process? You claim to be a democrat and embrace homeless people, weirdos, freaks, and apologize for stuff nobody alive had anything to do with and Shazaam ! You are in office. If you are a registered voter, the registrars office leaves your info laying around on laptops that are stolen, you get nailed for jury duty, and your phone rings incesantly with scum bag politicians asking for your vote. That's why I don't participate in the process period. All you have to do is send the registrar a letter asking to be stricken from the rolls if you registered in the first place. I am a veteran so don't give me the lecture about civic duty. I did my share.

About time! Shame they are not charging him for lying about business interest in the gym.

I think the only reason they arrested him is because the Hook brought all his fraudulent ways to the public's attention to the extent that it was impossible for them to sweep it under the rug. A personal recognizance bond is a get out of jail free card. His character does not support a PRB.

The commonwealth's attorney was in one of the pictures on Halfaday's site supporting him. I find that suspect. I hope the pressure is kept on to make sure justice is served in this case.

Good points, Doyle!

I just finished a jury questionaire the other day. Sooner or later you would think lists or no lists, the commonwealth should be able to figure out that I am the last person in the State of Virginia they want sitting on any jury, civil or criminal.

Sunny, I am also surprised at the personal recognizance bond. I'm surprised he didn't flee the state once the commonwealth advised him there were outstanding felony warrants.

Deleted by moderator.

I can handle the TRUTH!

From his website: “Equality, remember where you come from and together we can build a partnership.” - James Halfaday

Kind of ironic when he apparently could not remember that he did not come from 2423 Sunset Road. Makes you kind-of-wonder, if you forget where you "come from", is it still equality and a partnership?

I'm not stating that a person in Charlottesville would not get a 'th-wonk' on the head from a "5.8 earthquake centered in Louisa" but the lottery may, very well, have slightly better odds for those that enjoy a good bet.

Good job to The Hook for investigative reporting!

Makes one wonder where the officials-that-be were? Maybe the other candidates need a look, too!

Where a person ,lives or resides is often not a clear cut open and shut issue . People often have several addresses that they own,rent,lease,or have an arrangement with the owner/renter . A person can ,therefore,have numerous places in different jurisdictions where they reside but they only have one person . Consequently they can truthfully and legally list a different place of residence depending on the circumstance . Concluding that Mr Halfaday did not have an arrangement for residence at 2423 Sunset without input from him on the matter may prove to be erronous .

This could be true, Frank. This issue actually came up in a Charlottesville City Sheriff's election back in the mid 90s. One candidate was claiming the other candidate lived in Albemarle County and the voters should not be fooled by this person's antics. The facts were the other candidate was living in a nice house he owned in the city even though he still owned property (his main house) in Albemarle County.

Charlottesville has all of its original criminal cases going back to 1880s when the town was formed. I looked though the oldest drawer (so back in the 1880s) and one of the earliest cases was a guy who lived a few feet outside the city lines who ran for City Council and a petition was gotten up signed by X amount of people noting he lived X amount of feet outside the City boundary. I don't remember the name of the person or case as its been a few years since I looked at it.

For Sunny.

Halfaday took many, many, many pictures with just about anyone he could find, especially various community leaders elected and not elected, BEFORE he ran for office. Nothing strange about a person wanting a picture, but the pictures were then "linked" to his campaign AFTER he said he was running for office. In this case, a picture is not an endorsement at all. People that endorsed him are not even in office anymore. His pictures are like "whatever". I just wonder why he was endorsed by the people that did endorse him.

As a native North American Mr Halfaday has the later day adopted Euro/American concept of residence plus his traditional ethnic concept . He may be existing within those parameters established for thousands of years by his people whereby Charlottesville/Albemarle is a Keyoh that he has traditional or acquired rights to .This petty prosecution could be very costly to city coffers if they are successful in getting a conviction . These are prime type of cases which eventually end up in federal Supreme Courts . Mr Halfaday has no need no run and hide . He can stand strong and proud to fight for his rights if persecution dictates .

Frank, It would be interesting to know how someone who says he is Ojibwa would be able to make a claim to have acquired rights to this area based on some vague " traditional ethnic concept." The Ojibwa traditionally occupied the region around the Great Lakes.

Would that same concept apply to your commenting on our local political issues? You after all live far North of the Great Lakes region in Norther Labrador. That's about twice as far away. Are you Native America and is that why you think Charlottesville is a part of Canada where you live?

I know a few BS artists in this town. Some people just want to present themselves larger than they are to friends and acquaintances. And that's harmless enough. I mean a 65 year old non-entity can claim he was a marine who cut dozens of throats behind enemy lines in Nam and who's going to be any the wiser, or care for that matter. The mischief is when such a person (and this "halbstark" character certainly is) decides to "go public". That's when the old resumee padding habit bites you. As a bar-room or golflinks blowhard you get by and maybe, if your stories conform to the "plausibility envelope", you get believed, but god help you if you run for office, even a low rent office like city council.

@ JSGeare. The USGS is obligated under federal law to document ALL earthquake injuries, The USGS is on record stating no injuries in the Virginia 5.8 Earthquake, August 23, 2011.

Not guilty please! OMG.
False address & gym ownership to the SBOE, forged donors & donations to the SBOE, phony gay hate threats to newspaper, fake stalking allegations to Magistrate & Commonwealth Attorney, and fabricated Earthquake victim scenarios on Facebook.
The Hook states additional charges on the way from the Commonwealth Attorney’s office.
Who needs to JUDGE? You are an open book. Enough is enough is enough. Pinocchio told less lies.
Not only have you totally disrespected the election process with fraud, but Mr. James Halfaday, you have given the local LGBT community a bad name using your sexuality for attention, votes and sympathy.
Mr. Halfaday needs to confess to his political charade, pay the SBOE fines and/or do the jail time, seek mental health and lastly apologize to the gay community.
If not, then please pack your bags and head back home to wherever. Democrats and the Gay community don’t want you here!!!

Excellent reporting by the Hook – You’ve done the community a service.

This guy will merely go to some other small, myopic town--another "World Class City"--and ply his snake oil. Halfday is wholly pathetic, and needs to be ridden out of town (oops, bad choice of words...I mean driven out of town.

He might not even be gay, everything else so far has been a lie.

Sad that Mr. Halfaday proved to be so fraudulant. He was -- as far as I know -- the first gay/Native American to run for City Council, or even elected official in the city (or county. Or state!). Shame on Mr. Halfaday for representing these two minorities -- (okay, plus the local Democrats + area citizens) -- so badly. Both minority groups deserve far better (as do, again, local Dems and citizens in general).

perhaps not a democrat either.....

He probably won't even spend half a day in jail.

Even if he doesn't spend any time in jail, he will be a convicted felon and won't be able to pull this foolishness in any other city or county nationwide. I would think this is one of the main reasons the commonwealth is prosecuting this case.

"Nepharius Jackson"- that is very funny.......you get the prize.. you get to spend a halfaday with halfaday, making it 6 hrs..........

This seems a bit of an oversimplification but...if he did live where he said, wouldn't it be a simple proof of residency to resolve any confusion and end any litigation? Now that he says he is innocent and will hire an attorney???

"sez you"- imagine that, delusional grandeur in Charlottesville of all places................

HarryD I likes your sarcasm. Unfortunately Mr Halfaday will get in trouble for his delusions, city council will go on to profit from they'res.

This is great news for Mr Halfaday . Firstly as he loves being a martyr and in the news . If he win's his case he will be in a position of being falsly prosecuted by a government agency concerning one of it's by laws . He could sue for costs and damages . However if he loses then he will be in a position to get it up through the court system to the highest court in the land .The defense of aborigional rights infringement seems to be applicable . A landmark U.S.Suprime Court decision with the winner named as Halfaday would give him the last laugh .

Perhaps the CA should bring a charge of Peeping Provence against Lisa . The evidence is clear and all documented here in the Hook .

Independent (sorry I can't mispell it) Reality Check: The facts are out there if you look. No one needs the Hook to get them. Former addresses don't count as addresses forever. The actual owners of Snap Fitness had their lawyer state he didn't own their business. There are actual DOCUMENTS. And Sherry Iachetta just had a vendetta? What other democrats did she mess up? The Commonwealth Attorney just had to bring charges to save face? Too bad people couldn't just leave it all alone and just believe everything you - uh - Halfaday said, right? Don't bring political parties into it. Things of this nature transcend politics. I'll bet the democrats who voted for Halfaday feel more betrayed than any republicans. Pathetic. If all printed was untrue, why hasn't Halfaday brought a lawsut against The Hook for libel?

correction - lawsuit -

It is a petty victimless waste of funds ,time and energy at best .Just side show nonsense that will backfire against the C .

"sez you"- I hear ya!

He owns property at Pantops? Does he pay taxes on this property? No records . . .