By Associated Press - Tuesday, August 12, 2014

FREEHOLD, N.J. (AP) - Prosecutors say the campaign manager for a New Jersey state senate candidate was responsible for an early morning robocall that urged voters to support another candidate.

Monmouth County prosecutors say 45-year-old Dwayne Horner, of Little Elm, Texas, was indicted this week on one count of impersonation. He faces up to 18 months in prison if convicted.

Horner was the campaign manager for Leigh Ann Bellew, a Tea Party-backed candidate who unsuccessfully sought the Republican party’s nomination last year for the 13th Legislative District seat.

On the day the primary election was held, the robocall went out at 4 a.m. to registered Republican voters in the district. It urged them to vote for three incumbent GOP state lawmakers, including Bellew’s opponent.

Prosecutors said the caller’s phone number was “spoofed,” meaning another number was substituted to imply that the call came from Monmouth County Republican Party headquarters.

An investigation was launched after several residents contacted Republican party officials to complain about the early morning call. Authorities said the voice on the message was later determined to be Horner’s.

A telephone number for Horner could not be located Tuesday.

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