Former Michigan Governor Rick Snyder is the first in Michigan’s history to be charged with a crime relating to actions as the state’s chief executive. He and a handful of former staffers are charged with crimes relating to the Flint water contamination mess. Snyder is charged with willful neglect of duty. Some others caught up in the legal net are facing more serious felonies including perjury and involuntary manslaughter.

Now, some conservative allies of the former Governor and those charged in the case are challenging the process used to bring them in. In particular, the one person, or single judge grand jury investigation leading up to the indictments. Bridge Michigan reports it is a process unique to Michigan when looking at legal statutes nationwide. Only two other states allow something close to, but not the same as the one judge grand jury Michigan can employ in potential criminal cases.

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Bridge reports one of those challenging the situation is John Truscott, a Republican consultant and an ally of one of those former Snyder aids being charged. The process says Truscott, “…wasn’t fair at all, He tells Bridge, “Under a one-man grand jury, the judge doesn’t get the total picture because the defense is not allowed to present.”

Some lawyers familiar with the process involved say the former Governor and staff people were in effect shielded as suspects while the investigation was going on, but are now limited from presenting information in their defense because key information can be withheld from the public.

Attorney Charles Spies released a statement about the case. His office is representing former Snyder Communications Director and Chief of Staff Jarrod Agen in the case. Spies says, “The secretive tactics of a 'one-person grand jury' used to bring this meritless indictment with no details regarding the charge should shock and scare every American."

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