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Attorney files response to former undersheriff’s whistleblower lawsuit

Submitted by on November 7, 2019 – 12:56 amNo Comment

The attorney representing Alpena County Sheriff Steve Kieliszewski, and the sheriff’s office, has filed a response to a whistleblower lawsuit filed by former Undersheriff Terry King.

King, who was given an option to resign in lieu of being fired, claims his separation was due to a couple of work-related incidents that angered the sheriff and “…constitutes retaliation in violation of the Whistleblower’s Protection Act.” Kieliszewski said King was let go for some on-the-job decisions that constituted “more or less a lack of judgement.”

Kieliszewski’s attorney filed a response to the civil lawsuit late last week. In it, she denies any allegations of wrongdoing, and says Kieliszewski’s actions toward King “…have been based on lawful, non-discriminatory reasons.”

A pre-trial hearing is scheduled Friday morning. Judge Michael Mack of the 26th Circuit Court is named in King’s lawsuit and is a potential witness and thus has recused himself from the case, which is being handled by Judge George Mertz of the 46th Circuit Court.

King resigned on June 24, 2019, after serving 22 years at the sheriff’s office. He plans to run against Kieliszewski for sheriff in 2020.