Report: MSP Deemed Extortion Allegation “Unfounded”

A Michigan State Police investigation determined that the allegations of extortion by a fired Milford public services worker had no merit.

Michael Esson, the Village’s former assistant public services director, filed the suit in U.S. District Court in Detroit naming the Village and Public Services Director Robert Calley. Esson alleges that Calley would only approve his vacation requests for side jobs in exchange for a portion of his earnings and was forced to pay a $5,000 kickback from a project in Indiana. It’s further alleged that Calley would deny Esson’s vacation requests, unless he paid him $100 per day of vacation time.

However, HometownLife.com reports that MSP Detective Sgt. Mark Lambert concluded Esson was not being truthful in his allegations and the case was closed as the accusations were deemed to be unfounded. Esson’s attorney called the findings “completely false” and said State Police had subjected his client to a five-hour polygraph examination, which he claimed far exceeds the normal limits.

The lawsuit states Esson informed Village Manager Christian Wuerth about Calley’s behavior and that he had filed a report with Michigan State Police in May of this year. The complaint says Esson was later contacted by Wuerth, who said after talking with police he believed some or all of the allegations weren’t credible. Esson was subsequently placed on administrative leave and terminated July 18th for what was described as retaliation for filing a complaint against a village employee.

His lawsuit, and that of former maintenance employee Corey Lemarbe who alleged violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act as well as a hostile work environment, have proceedings scheduled next month in front of different judges. (JK)

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