ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — Eli Nicolosi, who is running to unseat incumbent State Rep. Dave Syverson (R-35th), fired back Thursday at accusations that members of his campaign had forged signatures on his petition for nomination.

According to a criminal complaint filed on April 21st, five residents of the Cedarhurst Senior Living Center, 7130 Crimson Ridge Drive, are victims of aggravated identity theft against a person 60 years of age or older for signatures that appear on Nicolosi’s petition.

Both Syverson and Nicolosi collected signatures from nursing home residents. While some of the names are the same on both men’s petition forms, the signatures do not appear to match.

On Thursday, Nicolosi released images from petition forms of State Rep. Joe Sosnowski (R-69th) which contains 2 of the signatures in question, claiming the signatures on his forms match those on Sosnowski’s — but not those on Syverson’s.

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“After recently learning of these allegations, I had my office contact the board of elections, after learning I was not the target of the investigations, it was brought to our attention that this matter had previously been brought before them and was rejected by them,” Nicolosi said in a statement.

“By manipulating the State’s Attorney’s office in this manner is a blatant attempt to manipulate the
democratic process,” Nicolosi continued. “The people of this district deserve better than that.”

An investigation is currently underway by the Winnebago County State’s Attorney’s Office.

On Tuesday, Syverson said, “We work very very hard to make sure our election process is clear and as clean and as above reproach [as possible], and so, when you find cases where forgery is occurring, especially against seniors, that is really disappointing,” Syverson said Tuesday. “It’s wrong under Illinois law. It is illegal. It is a felony.”