MINNEAPOLIS (AP) – A prison inmate serving a life term for two murders is running for a U.S. Senate seat in Minnesota. And it’s legal under Minnesota law.
The Star Tribune reports that state law bars inmates from running for state-level offices, but not for federal office.
Leonard Richards was convicted of killing his half-sister, May Wilson, in 1982, and of fatally shooting his lawyer, Robert Stratton, in 1987. The 75-year-old has unsuccessfully sought federal office several times.
Stratton’s sister says the Minnesota Secretary of State’s Office told her it couldn’t keep Richards off the ballot. A legal adviser for the office said courts have ruled that the agency can’t prohibit a felon, even a prisoner, from filing an affidavit of candidacy.
Stratton’s sister says she wants voters to know Richards’ history. She also intends to ask lawmakers to change the requirements.