For release on October 15, 2020
Deputy District Attorney
Public and Law Enforcement Integrity Unit
Gilroy School Trustee Candidate Charged with Falsifying Address
A recent high school graduate seeking election to the Gilroy School Board in November has been charged after falsifying his address to appear to make himself an eligible candidate.
Jonathan Hurtado, 18, lives with his mother in Morgan Hill. He illegally used a friend’s address on his Voter Registration and Candidate Information Request Form.
A date for an arraignment has not yet been set. If convicted of the misdemeanor, the defendant could face up to a year in jail.
“The voters of Gilroy should know that Mr. Hurtado knowingly falsified his election documents,” prosecutor Jason Malinsky said. “He is not a viable candidate in Trustee Area 3 because he is not a resident there.”
In November 2020, GUSD Trustees will be elected in four trustee areas: Trustee Areas 2, 5, and 6 (each a four-term year), and Trustee Area 3, a term which will expire in 2022. New to this election, a trustee area map was approved by the County of Santa Clara Registrar of Voters and the State Board of Education. Board of Trustees elections are now by trustee area, where voters cast their ballots for the Board seat in their area instead of the previous district-wide elections. Each trustee must reside within the designated trustee-area boundary and is elected only by the voters in that area.
Hurtado filled out a voter registration on July 31, 2020 stating that he lived in a home in Trustee Area 3 in Gilroy. He signed the form under Penalty of Perjury. On August 3, 2020, Hurtado filled out a Candidate Information Request Form stating he lived at the same address. On August 4, 2020, Hurtado filled out his California Fair Political Practices Commission Form 700 disclosure yet again using the same address. That form was also signed by Hurtado under Penalty of Perjury.
A DA investigation determined that Hurtado never lived at the address listed on his candidate forms. A child of the homeowners told investigators that she had given Hurtado – a former classmate – permission to use their address to get mail.
In a text message to his former classmate, Hurtado wrote asking her to use the address: “I would just have to get some mail sent their (sic) to show that I ‘live there.’”