Forfeiture From People Not Convicted of a Crime in Michigan Isn’t ‘Rare’

State Rep. Pete Lucido, R-Shelby Township, wants to require a conviction before property can be transferred from individuals to the government via a process known as civil asset forfeiture. MIRS News recently featured a dispute between Lucido and the Michigan State Police, which believes that it should be allowed to keep the property of people who are not convicted of a crime.

“I know that Rep. Lucido makes some assertions of police overreach but, while I’m not going to deny those, I would say that those are exceedingly rare,” said Sgt. Tim Fitzgerald, who works on legislative issues for the state police.

ForTheRecord says: In 2016, Michigan law enforcement agencies forfeited $15 million in cash, 2,037 vehicles and eight homes from 5,205 people. Ten percent of the people whose property was taken and given to the government were not charged with a crime and only 48 percent were convicted of a crime before they lost the right to their property.

This information is according to a transparency report filed this year and gathered by the Michigan State Police. People can decide for themselves whether that is an overreach, but it's certainly not rare.

Ten percent of the people in Michigan who had property seized by and then forfeited to the police in 2016 were not charged with a crime.

Michigan Capitol Confidential is the news source produced by the Mackinac Center for Public Policy. Michigan Capitol Confidential reports with a free-market news perspective.