BIRMINGHAM, Mich., June 3, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- On May 24, Birmingham, Mich. resident and businessman, Jeffery Rasawehr, was acquitted of all 13 counts of obstructing official business brought against him in case CRB-16-00942 by the Mercer County Sheriff's office in Ohio in 2016.
"The jury saw it for what it was: an abuse of power," said Rasawehr. "I am appreciative of the excellent work of my legal team. This case proves the legal system does work to protect free speech and expose public corruption."
Allegations in the complaint from the Mercer County Sheriff's Office stated that by exercising his right to free speech using non-emergency lines and online message boards, Rasawehr obstructed the Sheriff's office in the execution of its duties. Rasawehr allegedly sent eight messages to the Mercer County Sheriff's Office over the span of eight days using the sheriff's office online form.
"The defense team is encouraged that the jury upheld the vital principal of free speech that defines our great country," said Dennis Sawan, attorney with Sawan & Sawan, LLC. "Our forefathers envisioned a system in which power emanates from the people, and that those people can speak truth to power without fear of retribution or viewpoint discrimination. The jury's decision in this case sends a message that the right to free speech is alive and well - despite the failed attempt to limit it."
During the four-day trial, Sheriff Grey testified that had the messages from Rasawehr been complimentary, he likely would not have faced criminal charges, and none of the Sheriff's office employees who testified said they were obstructed in any specific task.
"I have been investigating corruption in Mercer County for the last two and half years, and the deeper I dug, the more corruption I found within Sheriff Grey's office and the county prosecutor's office," said Jack Bastian, a private investigator with The Integrity Project. "Jeffery Rasawehr just spent years defending himself against that corruption, and in the end, justice has prevailed in the protection of the free speech rights of all Ohio citizens."
Rasawehr's legal defense team consisted of Dennis E. Sawan (Lead Trial Counsel), Dennis P. Sawan, Chris A. Sawan of Sawan & Sawan LLC and Joseph Yamin of Lambert Leser P.C.
SOURCE Jeffery Rasawehr