Skip to Main

Gladwin Co.’s Grout Twp. Residents Voice Concerns Over Clerk Following Charges Of Mishandling Primary Ballots

Promo Image: Gladwin Co.’s Grout Twp. Residents Voice Concerns Over Clerk Following Charges Of Mishandling Primary Ballots

A number of people in Grout Township now want their clerk to step down. 

Linda Birgel is accused of purposefully disqualifying ballots in last year’s election.
She’s still on the job. 
Police say she intentionally mis-marked several ballots, hoping to change the results of the election. 
Birgel is now charged with two felonies, including absentee ballot tampering and disclosing and obstructing votes.
She still remains the township clerk. 

"I think it’s horrible I have actually known them for years and I’m not surprised by it to be honest," said Phil Mcgourty. 

People in Grout Township, blown away, that their clerk maintains her position regardless of serious accusations against her. 

"This legal thing. She can’t work for the board or for anybody else. All townships in this state they can’t do what she did. She can’t have any voice or do anything with this board," said a meeting attendee. 

The board says her removal would require a recall vote. 

"It’s not the boards position to take action. Linda is an elected official it would be up to the public to take action," said Marty Shearer.

Birgel, continuing to say she needs more time before answering questions. 

"I can’t say anything because we don’t really know. There’s been no hearing. Nothing," she said. 

Obviously everyone is innocent until proven guilty but some people do still have concerns. What would you say to those people?

"Have you ever been falsely accused of anything have you? If you have you have the empathy to know what Linda and I are going through give us an opportunity to prove she hasn’t done anything wrong. Be fair," Don Birgel said. 

 But in order to be fair some question whether another county should take on the case. 

"With her husband being a county commissioner I don’t think our prosecutor or our judge should be handling the case I think it should be moved to a different county," said Phil Mcgourty. 

Now it’s a waiting game until a verdict comes down. 

"You don’t violate your office. You took an oath you need to uphold these things and obviously if she’s found guilty she didn’t do that," said Robert Schafer.