Questions for Governor Whitmer’s State of the State

Governor Gretchen Whitmer is scheduled to make her State of the State address on Wednesday and there are a number of topics we can expect to hear about. These include COVID-19 impacts on the economy, health and education systems, plans for the nearly $8 billion Michigan received from the federal infrastructure bill, and progress in Benton Harbor’s water crisis, among other hot topics.

But there’s one topic that most likely won’t be brought up: State Attorney General Dana Nessel’s continued missteps in wasting millions of tax dollars on politically motivated charges against former Governor Rick Snyder and eight others.

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1st Anniversary of Flint Water Charges Signals Long Fight Ahead

It’s been a long and expensive year since the filing of misdemeanor charges against former Gov. Rick Snyder.

Some very basic issues – where to hold the trial, what judge should hear the case, what evidence can be presented – are still unresolved.

And they may not be for many months.

“As we approach the anniversary of the charges being filed, it is clear that there is no end in sight,” said Jason Brown, a spokesman for the Snyder legal team. “That means, there is no limit to the millions of dollars in costs that are mounting on top of more than $30 million already spent by the taxpayers on this bungled and politically driven charade – that is real money diverted from the real needs of Michiganders who are in need of services to help their families and businesses.”

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Legal woes pile up for Attorney-General’s mishandling of Flint Water cases

The Attorney-General’s efforts to cover up the mishandling of privileged and confidential documents in the Flint water case should not be condoned by a Michigan judge, a defendant in the case says in a recent legal filing.

Judge Elizabeth Kelly is receiving feedback on her November ruling, known as a protective order, which said the state’s prosecutors must set up an independent team to review millions of documents seized by the state related to the controversy – documents that include attorney-client communications.

Judge Kelly made the ruling at the request of state employees charged with felony offenses relating to the Flint water controversy, who like Governor Snyder, brought this breach of due process rights to the court’s attention.

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A Political Prosecution in Michigan

The Flint lead-water indictments look worse all the time.

Originally featured in The Wall Street Journal on December 27, 2021.

Some politicians seem to want to lock up their opponents more than they do criminals. Consider the tainted prosecution of former Michigan GOP Gov. Rick Snyder and his associates over the city of Flint’s lead-water contamination.

A state judge last month ordered state Solicitor General Fadwa Hammoud to establish an independent “taint team” to review some 21 million documents her office seized to investigate Mr. Snyder and eight other public officials involving Flint. Many documents are protected by attorney-client privilege, so prosecutors and the grand jury should never have laid eyes on them.

Now Ms. Hammoud and assistant attorney general Christopher Kessel are protesting the judge’s order. They say hiring outside attorneys to exclude documents protected by attorney-client privilege would cost the state $48 million and take three years.

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Public health groups support Lyon against criminalizing public service

Four groups representing Michigan public health officials have filed motions with a Genessee County Circuit Court judge to allow them to file briefs in support of Nick Lyon, the former MDHHS Director facing manslaughter charges related to the Flint water crisis.

The Association of State and Territorial Health Officials, the Michigan Association for Local Public Health, the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists, and the Michigan Associations of Health Plans filed the motions, demonstrating wide recognition of the dangerous precedent these proceedings set for public officials.

The ASTHO said it filed the motion “because a fundamental issue before the Court is whether ASTHO’s members – public health officials – should face criminal charges and trial for their professional decisions.”

Lyon is facing charges for deaths tied to a Legionnaires disease outbreak in Flint during the water crisis in 2014 and 2015. He is one of six former and current city and state employees who have been charged by Attorney General Dana Nessel in an act of political retribution.

Judge orders protective order to block release of attorney-privileged documents

7th Judicial Circuit Court Judge Elizabeth Kelly issued a protective order on November 19th barring the Michigan AG’s office from reviewing or producing any seized documents until a taint team is established to review the discovery in the case against former Gov. Rick Snyder.

This ruling follows a motion by the Snyder defense team on October 12th asking for the protective order due to continued malfeasance by the Attorney General’s office in regards to proper procedures of discovery.

“This is a massive breach of attorney-client privilege,” stated Brian Lennon, an attorney for Snyder. “The prosecution has our entire legal defense strategy in their hands.”

Prior to the ruling, email evidence surfaced showing two assistant attorney’s general attempted to raise a red flag that improper procedures of discovery were being used, but those warnings were ignored.

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Welcome to FlintLegalBlog.com

The FlintLegalBlog.com is a news and information page about the egregious prosecution of Gov. Rick Snyder for misdemeanor charges resulting from the Flint water crisis of 2015. This site is funded by the defense team for the purpose of providing accurate and timely information. The unprecedented prosecution of Gov. Snyder — who served two terms from 2011 to 2018 — has cost Michigan taxpayers millions of dollars, has done nothing to help the people of Flint, and has no end in sight.