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Investigation Flint Councilman Eric Mays GoFundMe Attorney General

Michigan State Police have referred a GoFundMe account tied to Flint City Council member Eric Mays to the AG for prosecution.

The Michigan State Police have referred an investigation of a GoFundMe account connected to Flint City Council member Eric Mays to the Michigan Department of Attorney General for potential prosecution. Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton reported that his office forwarded the investigation to the attorney general after it was filed by state police at the end of last year. While Leyton did not disclose details of the investigation, sources familiar with the case confirmed that it involves a crowdfunding platform account that had raised over $23,000. A notice on the GoFundMe web page states that Mays has disabled new donations to this fundraiser.

The Department of Attorney General's press secretary, Danny Wimmer, stated that the department has received the referral of the state police's investigation of Mays from Leyton. Wimmer also mentioned that the department often seeks a review from the Michigan Department of State when an investigation alleges violations of election and campaign finance law. Mays, who has previously been involved in lawsuits with the city's mayor and council members, launched the GoFundMe page in March 2023 with the intention of using the proceeds to pay for future court battles. The account gained over $13,000 within 10 days of its launch, driven by a national following on platforms like TikTok.

However, two months later, Flint City Attorney William Kim informed the City Council and the mayor that Mays "has likely violated Michigan's Legal Defense Fund Act" and could face criminal prosecution. According to Kim's legal opinion, Mays has likely committed nearly 300 misdemeanor violations of the act, each punishable by imprisonment and fines. Mays' legal representatives have stated that any complaints regarding his legal defense fund are politically motivated and intended to portray him in a negative light.

Mays has gained a national following due to his confrontations with fellow council members, which have been widely shared on social media platforms. Some council members have accused Mays of bullying behavior and creating a hostile environment within City Hall. As a result, he was suspended from council meetings for 90 days in December. The Legal Defense Fund Act, which regulates contributions and expenditures made to assist elected officials in defending themselves against legal actions arising from their governmental duties, was signed into law in 2008.

Mays has stated that the money raised through the GoFundMe page will be used to appeal a 2023 conviction for disorderly conduct during a council meeting. He has maintained that he has been unfairly disciplined and singled out for his conduct during meetings. He has filed a statement of organization for his legal defense fund with the Secretary of State's Bureau of Elections, listing Dort Federal Credit Union as the depository. The law requires elected officials who accept such donations to file a statement of organization and quarterly transaction reports.

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