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Motion to Drop Charges Against Former Adams Twp Clerk and Her Attorney

Defense argues Stephanie Scott's actions were in good faith and in accordance with her duties as clerk; prosecutor maintains she broke the law.
Posted at 8:59 PM, Jun 12, 2024
  • Defense argues motion to drop felony charges brought by Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel against former Adams Township Clerk and her attorney for alleged election violations.
  • Prosecutor maintains Scott deliberately broke the law.
  • Defense argues Stephanie Scott's actions were in good faith and in accordance with her duties.
  • Watch the video for excerpts from Wednesday's court proceedings.

(The following is a transcription of the full broadcast story)

Wednesday, attorney Dan Hartman moved to drop felony charges against his clients — former Adams Township Clerk Stephanie Scott and her attorney Stefanie Lambert — concerning the handling of voting data and equipment following the 2020 election.

Attorney General Dana Nessel announced several felony charges against the pair last month.

Hartman said Scott was acting in good faith and within her authority as clerk, with the intention of preserving election data, as state and federal laws require.

“Stephanie Scott’s motives, as stated in the swear-to, are to preserve the record,” argued Hartman.

He says orders from the State’s Director of Elections conflicted with that intention.

"I do not see how her refusal to comply without a court order, considering the conflicting duty, and considering that she was acting under the advice of counsel, can sustain a [inaudible]..." said Hartman.

Hartman is also arguing that analysis provided by cybersecurity consultant Ben Cotton, whose access to election data is the subject of the charges, falls within attorney-client communication, as he was contracted by Lambert — Scott’s attorney at the time — and that Scott, as clerk, had the right to his expertise.

Assistant Attorney General Richard Cunningham, who is prosecuting the case, argued that disclosure of confidential voting data is unlawful, regardless.

"She accessed the computer system for the specific intent of disclosing that information — information that was not to be disclosed," maintained Cunningham.

Judge Megan Stiverson is expected to make a decision on the motion to dismiss the charges within the next few days.

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