House Dems want independent probe of Elliot escape

The Ionia Correctional Facility. (Feb. 3, 2014)
The Ionia Correctional Facility. (Feb. 3, 2014)

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Democratic lawmakers are demanding an independent investigation into a murderer’s escape from a Michigan prison.

House Minority Leader Tim Greimel said Monday that Republicans who control state government can’t be trusted to fairly assess whether budget cuts contributed to the Feb. 2 escape.

Republican Attorney General Bill Schuette is investigating the escape at the request of Republican Gov. Rick Snyder.

Michael Elliot leaves a courtroom in LaPorte, Ind. (Feb. 4, 2014)
Michael Elliot leaves a courtroom in LaPorte, Ind. (Feb. 4, 2014)

Michael David Elliot, who was serving a life sentence for four murders, was apprehended by Indiana authorities a day after his escape. Democrats have questioned whether Republican-backed cuts to perimeter patrols and manned gun towers factored into the escape.

The state denies cutbacks had a role.

Schuette’s spokeswoman says the investigation is impartial because he holds an office constitutionally separate from the governor.

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