A Michigan sheriff is facing calls for his resignation after defending the militia group that allegedly plotted to kidnap Gov. Gretchen WhitmerGretchen WhitmerArkansas GOP governor on Trump rallies: There shouldn’t be mass gatherings without social distancing Whitmer says Michigan votes will not be announced by ‘artificial deadlines’ set by ‘people with political agendas’ Sunday shows preview: Trump, top Republicans recover from COVID-19; stimulus bill remains in limbo MORE (D) and after it was revealed he shared a stage with one of the plotters at a past event.
Barry County Sheriff Dar Leaf joined William Null, one of the men accused in the plot, at a May 18 anti-lockdown rally, MLive reported.
Last week, after the announcement of the kidnapping plot and the arrest of the alleged organizers, Leaf said in a television interview that “perhaps they were just trying to arrest the governor and not kidnap her.”
Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel (D) responded to Leaf’s comments on Twitter, saying “Let me make this abundantly clear-Persons who are not sworn, licensed members of a law enforcement agency cannot and should not ‘arrest’ government officials with whom they have disagreements. These comments are dangerous.”
As Michigan’s top law enforcement official, let me make this abundantly clear-Persons who are not sworn, licensed members of a law enforcement agency cannot and should not “arrest” government offficials with whom they have disagreements. These comments are dangerous. https://t.co/UZTJKbjdfs
— Dana Nessel (@dananessel) October 9, 2020
Leaf has also questioned whether the alleged plot was “a serious thing.”
A protest calling for his resignation is scheduled for Tuesday morning ahead of a bi-monthly meeting of the Barry County Board of Commissioners.
“We are not accusing him of having known about the kidnapping plot and we are not accusing him of being a part of it at all,” organizer Olivia Bennett told MLive. “Some people in this county have tried to make the connection and have said we should investigate Dar for that, but that is not where I’m at or what I am suggesting at all. What I am suggesting is his actions and his words embolden people who would attempt to do such things.”
The Hill has reached out to Leaf for comment. The sheriff has previously said he will not resign.