Published On: July 10th, 2024Categories: Arizona News

Walter Ringfield Jr., the 27-year-old man accused of stealing an electronic tabulator key from the Maricopa County Elections Department last month, has been charged in three other thefts within the past year. 

Ringfield on Tuesday pleaded not guilty in Maricopa County Superior Court to one count of computer tampering for allegedly stealing the ballot tabulator key from Maricopa County on June 20, while he was employed as a temporary elections worker. 

In the other cases, Ringfield has been indicted by a grand jury for theft and burglary, both felonies, as well as criminal trespass, a misdemeanor. 


Ringfield was arrested for the tabulator key theft on June 21, after election workers reportedly saw him on surveillance video putting the key in his pocket. Police said they found the key when searching his residence. 

Days later, police identified Ringfield as the man who reportedly stole some challenge coins and coasters from the desk of an Arizona state senator after entering a restricted area of the Arizona Senate building on June 15. 

Police said they found the challenge coins inside his residence. 

Election conspiracy theorists, who have been challenging the legitimacy of Maricopa County’s elections since Donald Trump lost the race for president in 2020, soon began spreading theories that the two thefts were part of some sort of coordinated plot to tamper with the upcoming primary election on July 30. 

While Ringfield has previously worked as a volunteer for Democratic campaigns, and filed a statement of interest to run for U.S. Senate as a Democrat last year, Maricopa County Sheriff Russ Skinner has said there is no evidence the crimes were politically motivated or that anyone else was involved. 

After Ringfield was arrested for the tabulator key theft, a Phoenix Police research analyst recognized his photo in a news report as the man police were looking for in a May 20 theft from the Phoenix Art Museum. 

In that case, Ringfield is accused of taking more than $9,500 in vintage jewelry from the museum during a private event. No one noticed the jewelry was missing until two days later, and police later released surveillance images of Ringfield, asking for help identifying him. 

Police also claim that the vehicle the man suspected of stealing the jewelry was driving that day at the art museum matches a car that Ringfield owns and that they found the tennis shoes that the suspected thief was wearing at Ringfield’s home.

At the time of all of these thefts, Ringfield was enrolled in a diversion program following a September 2023 felony theft of more than $1,000 from a Fry’s grocery store. Because Ringfield violated the diversion agreement by allegedly committing new crimes, the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office on June 27 asked the court to vacate its suspension of prosecution for the grocery store theft and to allow prosecution to resume. 

According to court documents, Ringfield is unemployed and has no assets, but has been living with someone in Phoenix. 

On his Truth Social account, a social media platform owned by Trump, Ringfield has shared multiple posts from right-wing news organizations like the Gateway Pundit and Newsmax, along with posts by far-right social media personalities. 

His account, filled with posts over the past two years that were chaotic and often difficult to decipher, has since been removed.

On May 19, 2023, he posted, “Not only am I ready for Doomsday, I can defeat it easily. Where on Earth is Doomsday?”

On July 28, 2023 Ringfield posted, “I will die for my country and state.” 

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