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GOP lawmaker held in jail after alleged incident including shots fired

Rep. Neil Friske (R-Charlevoix) is being held in the Lansing city jail while the prosecutor reviews an incident that allegedly included shots being fired.
Steve Carmody
/
Michigan Public
Rep. Neil Friske (R-Charlevoix) is being held in the Lansing city jail while the prosecutor reviews an incident that allegedly included shots being fired.

Update, 6/21/24 — 12:55 p.m.: State Rep. Neil Friske was released from jail Friday while an investigation continues into allegations against him that include sexual assault.

The first-term Republican lawmaker was arrested early yesterday, after Lansing police officers responded to a report of a man with a gun and possible shots fired.

The Lansing Police Department requested warrants on felony charges of assault, sexual assault and a weapons violation.

The Ingham County Prosecutor will decide if and when to file charges based on the results of the investigation.

ORIGINAL STORY:

A Republican state lawmaker remains jailed in Lansing following his arrest early Thursday for “a felony-level offense” after police officers responded to a report of shots fired.

First-term Rep. Neil Friske (R-Charlevoix) missed Thursday’s House session and several record roll call votes and may have to wait in jail until Saturday for his arraignment. A statement from the Lansing Police Department said a report will likely be presented to the prosecutor on Friday.

“Additional investigation is still underway, and we expect to present the case for review to the Ingham County Prosecutors Office tomorrow for charges,” it said.

In a Facebook post, Friske’s reelection campaign appeared to try to link the arrest to the upcoming GOP primary and a “deep state” conspiracy.

“As many of us know, Rep. Friske is always exercising his 2nd Amendment right,” it said.

The campaign also called the timing of the arrest “highly suspect” as absentee ballots will be mailed soon and claimed without evidence that Friske’s primary challenger, Parker Fairbairn, has “deep-state ties.”

The district, which comprises the northwestern tip of the Lower Peninsula and the eastern tip of the Upper Peninsula, is solidly Republican. A spokesman for House Minority Leader Matt Hall (R-Richland Twp.) did not respond to a request for comment.

Rick Pluta is Senior Capitol Correspondent for the Michigan Public Radio Network. He has been covering Michigan’s Capitol, government, and politics since 1987. His journalism background includes stints with UPI, The Elizabeth (NJ) Daily Journal, The (Pontiac, MI) Oakland Press, and WJR. He is also a lifelong public radio listener.