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Charges in Michigan State Police corruption probe

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(photo by Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio)
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Two Michigan State Police lieutenants have been charged with more than 30 counts of corruption. The officers are accused of stealing property during home searches. Authorities say stolen items include televisions, computers, cell phones and drugs. 

Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette says the officers also worked with a Monroe County civilian to profit off of auctions of seized property. 

“Normally when auctions are conducted, the proceeds are tallied and done properly, and put into part of a multi-jurisdictional pot, so to speak. In this instance there were phony auctions, and so the proceeds or the property, or sometimes both, were pocketed. And that’s wrong.”

 State Police Director Kristie Etue  says the investigation began after the target of a search filed a complaint. 

“It was like peeling back an onion, basically. One layer, we thought we were coming in to look at this, every time we’d look at one part of this investigation, it revealed more parts to be investigated.”

The most serious of the charges against the officers is racketeering, which is punishable by up to 20 years in prison and a 100-thousand dollar fine.