Bryan Gortmaker is the head of the South Dakota Division of Criminal Investigation. Attorney General Marty Jackley assigned the top man in the department to investigate Annette Bosworth on charges of perjury and filing a false or forged instrument.

This is part one of Gortmaker’s testimony, given on the 1st day of Bosworth’s trial.

Gortmaker spends a lot of time showing something that isn’t in dispute : that Annette Bosworth signed voter petitions that she did not personally witness.

Bosworth has never denied that there are petitions she signed that she didn’t personally witness. 

This is a crucial point because the state’s entire case is trying to “prove” that Bosworth signed petitions she didn’t personally witness being signed. As you can hear in the testimony, the state of South Dakota spent considerable time and money tryings to prove something that Bosworth clearly admits to doing in the radio interview played here during Gortmaker’s testimony.

Bosworth’s defense is and has always been that she didn’t commit a crime because she had no intent to break any law and was told by her attorney Joel Arends that it was legal for her to sign.

Bosworth’s case was laid out clearly in opening remarks by her attorney Dana Hanna that you can listen to here. 

During the radio interview, you can hear Bosworth struggle to sound like a politician while dealing with the host of advice she was getting at the time but she very clearly says she was in Philippines; something she has always said but that Jackley and Gortmaker felt the need to ‘prove’ in the most labored way possible, including issuing asubpoena to Facebook and contacting the Department of Homeland Security.

It’s also worth pointing out that when Bosworth did the radio interview, she was being advised by Arends and others on how to deal with the charges…and at the time, there were NO charges of criminal wrongdoing. In other words, she’s not defending herself against criminal charges but against charges that the the petition signatures aren’t valid.