Eavesdropping Charge Dismissed Against Activist School Mom
ONAWAY, Mich. (AP) — A judge dismissed an unusual felony charge against a northern Michigan woman who used her phone to record a conversation between two school officials.
Erin Chaskey, who has complained that a history teacher at Onaway High School is too liberal, said she was standing outside the superintendent’s office and recorded a conversation between two people because they were talking about her.
“They did not close the door,” Presque Isle County Judge Aaron Gauthier said Monday in dismissing the eavesdropping charge, referring to Rod Fullerton, who was Onaway superintendent at the time, and a school board member.
In October, Chaskey was standing in a reception area about 10 feet away from the office, and “they should know that people come and go there,” the judge said.
A message seeking comment was left Tuesday for the county prosecutor.
“This vindictive prosecution was a wrongful and retaliatory effort to silence Erin,” Chaskey’s attorney, Daren Wiseley, told the Detroit Free Press.
Chaskey, whose son attends the school, has raised questions about curriculum. She was barred from school property after the case was filed.
The judge said Wiseley raised “interesting constitutional questions” about whether Chaskey was charged while trying to hold “hold government accountable.” But he said he didn’t need to go that far to resolve the case.