Forest Park council seat a tie, runoff forced in mayor race

By Justin Boron

Two races are still undecided in Forest Park with Ward 2 coming out knotted in a 113 tie and none of the mayor candidates collecting sufficient votes to avoid a runoff.

However, at least one race had a clear victor. Winning 115 to two other candidates 97, Sparkle K. Adams will take over longtime Councilman Henry Estes' seat. Crazy Horse Saloon owner David Rashmir took 27 votes in the race.

“I made history,” said Adams, who is the first African American woman on the City Council.

Mayor Chuck Hall and Corine Deyton will face off again during a runoff. Hall collected 451 votes, and Deyton garnered 365 votes. Darnell Moorer trailed the two with 330 votes.

Hall said he'll keep campaigning and will seek the support of Moorer.

Deyton was confident and said she would be working just as hard as she has been.

“I'm planning to win in three more weeks,” she said.

Deyton said Moorer told her if she was in the runoff he would throw his support to her. She said she would do the same for him.

“I think Mr. Moorer will keep his word,” she said.

Moorer said he would talk to both candidates before making a decision.

Councilwoman Debbie Youmans and opposition candidate Frank Brandon were tied with three absentee applications still not in, said Leon Beeler, the election superintendent. If any of the three voters mailed those in, they would have to be postmarked by Tuesday to be counted.

Youmans said she was prepared to go for round two.

“I feel great about it. I'm not worried about it. My opponent did a great job in campaigning and I'm ready to go at it again. I will win,” she said.

Brandon thought he had lost the election but later found that the absentee ballots had not yet been accounted for. He said he already has devised a strategy for the potential runoff.

“We're going to map out Ward 2. Every house is going to get worked in the next three weeks if there is a runoff.”

If any of the three absentee votes come back valid, Beeler said they could generate an outcome for the race. But if they don't receive the votes, they are declared invalid or they don't break the tie, the candidates will participate in a runoff.

Beeler also said nothing about the election would be official until Friday. He said that would leave him time to consult with other election officials and review the city's charter to ensure he is proceeding correctly.

Staff writer Ed Brock contributed to this story.