FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 9, 2017
For more information, contact Mike LaSusa: firstname.lastname@example.org
Independent Journalist Sues Michigan State Police, Antrim County for Non-Compliance With Freedom of Information Act
Independent journalist Mike LaSusa has filed lawsuits alleging that the Michigan State Police and Antrim County are attempting to block the public’s access to records concerning a controversial murder-suicide case by charging excessive fees that are unlawful under Michigan’s Freedom of Information Act.
LaSusa, a journalist who has covered crime and security issues in the United States and abroad for several years, is seeking public records related to the case of Anne Avery Miller, a resident of northern lower Michigan who was criminally charged for her son Sam’s 2007 murder and later committed suicide while in the custody of Antrim County police. (The State Police were also involved in this investigation.)
The release of the requested records could help clarify the events surrounding Sam’s death as well as his mother’s jailhouse suicide, which involved alleged law enforcement incompetence throughout the investigation, prosecution and incarceration. Avery Miller and many of those close to her insisted that she was innocent of the crime with which she had been charged, and that her death was the result of improper behavior on the part of law enforcement and judicial officials.
Despite the fact that the release of the requested records would clearly serve the public interest, both Antrim County and the Michigan State Police have attempted to bar access to the records by charging excessive fees for processing this request.
LaSusa’s lawsuits seek to compel the disclosure of the records requested in this case. They also seek to establish a precedent for other citizens and journalists seeking records under the FOIA that are clearly in the public interest. Public bodies should not be allowed to stonewall access to records of public interest by charging excessive and unwarranted fees.
Mike LaSusa is represented by his father Lawrence LaSusa of LaSusa Law Offices in this matter. For more information, please contact Mike LaSusa by email at email@example.com.
Copies of the filed complaints are available below in PDF form.
Michigan State Police Complaint
Antrim County Complaint