Giuliani’s Michigan witness served probation in sex video plea deal

Melissa Carone, who was working for Dominion Voting Services, speaks in front of the Michigan House Oversight Committee in Lansing, Michigan. The president's attorneys, led by Rudy Giuliani, have made numerous allegations of election fraud.
Melissa Carone, who was working for Dominion Voting Services, speaks in front of the Michigan House Oversight Committee in Lansing, Michigan. The president's attorneys, led by Rudy Giuliani, have made numerous allegations of election fraud.

Credit: TNS

Credit: TNS

Voter fraud testimony prompted a spoof by ‘Saturday Night Live’ over the weekend

A Michigan woman who served as a witness for Rudy Giuliani during a legislative hearing in Lansing last week was until recently on probation stemming from a case in which she was accused of sending sex videos to her fiance’s ex-wife.

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Mellissa Carone, 33, of Grosse Pointe Woods is a supporter of President Donald Trump who delivered colorful testimony Wednesday claiming mass voter fraud in Detroit without evidence. Her testimony about her time working as an information technology contractor for Dominion Voting Systems on election night prompted a spoof by “Saturday Night Live” over the weekend.

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Police records obtained through a records request show that, in 2019, Southgate investigators charged Carone — then using her married name of Mellissa Wright — with one count of using a computer to commit a crime and one count of obscenity in the first degree.

The two misdemeanor charges were later dropped in a deal with the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office in which Carone pleaded guilty to the lesser charge of disorderly conduct, said Maria Miller, a spokeswoman for the office.

Carone was sentenced to 12 months’ probation in September 2019, Miller said, and the case was closed in September 2020 by the court. Miller could not immediately provide further details on the plea arrangement, she said.

A Southgate Police report said Carone initially claimed in an interview with police that she never sent the sexually explicit emails, but then investigators presented her with information returned from a search warrant probing the source of the email account and IP address used to send the images.

“Mellissa then confessed to sending the videos because she wanted to send (the ex-wife) ‘over the top,’” a police investigator wrote in a 2019 incident report. “Mellissa stated that she knew it was wrong and after she sent the videos she told (her fiance) to get a new router and get a new wifi company.”

“To quote Rudy Giuliani, instead of investigating a credible witness, why don’t you go investigate Hunter Biden smoking crack?” Carone told The Detroit News in an interview.

Carone stressed that the initial charges against her were dropped and said she took the plea deal on the disorderly conduct charge “because I am a mother, and I had a full-time job at the time, and I could not keep going to court.”

Carone said it actually was her husband, Matthew Stackpoole, who sent the explicit emails but that he used her phone to do so. Stackpoole told the HuffPost in a text message that he did send the videos.

“Being that it was sent from my phone, I had to take the charges, or I was gonna lose my job because I could not go back to court every week,” Carone said.

People are trying to discredit her testimony on alleged election fraud by digging up her background, she said.

“I know that people want to make this about me because they love me, and they love my personality. And that’s great,” Carone said.

“But one thing that that anybody that knows me, or people that don’t even know me, cannot and will never be able to ever claim about me is that I’m a liar. I am not a liar. I’ve never been known to be a liar. I am not a liar. And I am the most honest person.”

Her former attorney, David Loeckner, confirmed to The News that he represented Carone in her case but declined to comment further.

Stackpoole’s ex-wife, Jessica, said her dispute with the couple dates to 2017 but that she used to be friendly with Carone.

“She is calculating and methodical,” Jessica Stackpoole said about Carone. “The political thing came out of nowhere. I was close personal friends with her for five months ... and I never, ever had a political discussion with her, not once ever.”

Carone appeared last week before the Michigan House Oversight Committee, where Giuliani urged state lawmakers to intervene in the state’s election, which President-elect Joe Biden won 51%-48% or by 154,000 votes.

In a HuffPost interview, Giuliani dismissed the idea that Carone’s criminal history raises questions about her credibility as a witness in Lansing.

“There is no rule that people coming off probation are incredible as a matter of law,” Giuliani said. “I don’t know her circumstances, but her testimony is corroborated by other witnesses, documentary evidence and expert testimony.”

At the hearing, Carone claimed that she witnessed thousands of instances of ballots being run through tabulators in Detroit multiple times. But election officials have said she didn’t understand what she was seeing at the TCF Center.

A Wayne County judge previously said Carone “made numerous demonstrably false allegations” and labeled her claims “not credible” in a November ruling.

Giuliani seemed to try to rein in Carone at the hearing when she challenged a Republican legislator questioning her about her claims.

Carone, who described herself as an information technology expert, lists on her LinkedIn page that she worked as a cybersecurity analyst for Ford Motor Co. in Livonia for over a year through August 2020.

A spokesman for the automaker said Friday that she was never an employee of the company. When asked about this, Carone said she was a contractor for Ford through a former employer, which she declined to identify.

Carone also testified at the state legislative hearing that she has two degrees.

Her LinkedIn account lists an associate’s degree from the University of Michigan, but UM does not grant associate’s degrees. UM officials said they have no record of her at the university.

Carone said Monday she took a couple semesters off because she recently had a baby, but that she intends to return to complete her degree in cybersecurity.

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