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State Rep. Neil Friske arrested in Lansing for alleged ‘felony-level’ offense

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Note: This story has been updated to include information from the Lansing Police Department and statements from Friske and Fairbairn’s campaigns.

LANSING — State Rep. Neil Friske was arrested in Lansing early Thursday morning for an alleged “felony-level offense,” a police spokesperson confirmed.

”He was arrested early this morning,” said Lansing Police Department spokesperson Jordan Gulkius. “He is still lodged in our jail.”


Gulkis said that LPD officers were called to a suburb south of Lansing around 2:45 a.m. for a report of a male with a gun, along with possible shots fired.

Officers responded shortly after and arrested Friske, 62. Friske, R-Charlevoix, will be arraigned on his charges Friday or Saturday, Gulkis said.

Friske’s campaign team released a statement on social media early Thursday afternoon claiming that the arrest may have been politically motivated.

“This morning, it was brought to our attention that Representative Friske was arrested and being held. As many of us know, Rep. Friske is always exercising his 2nd Amendment right,” they wrote. “We do not have any details, besides what has the media sourced, oddly before anyone of us knew anything.”


The statement continued that the timing of the arrest was “highly suspect,” considering its proximity to the August 6 primary election and that an organization had recently conducted polling between Friske and his Republican opponent Parker Fairbairn.

“Clearly, Rep. Friske is over the target in this race,” the post concluded.

Friske’s spokesperson in the House did not respond to requests for comment. A spokesperson for the Ingham County Prosecutor’s Office said he had not yet received a warrant request from law enforcement and was not able to comment.

Friske was elected to represent the state’s 107th House District in 2022 and is currently running for reelection. His district includes Charlevoix, Petoskey, East Jordan, St. Ignace and Mackinaw City.


He is considered one of the most conservative House members, often voting against legislation with broad bipartisan support.

In a MIRS ranking based on 2023 voting records, Friske was second only to Rep. Josh Schriver, who was reprimanded earlier this year for posts supporting the racist “Great Replacement” theory.

Fairbairn, Friske’s Republican primary opponent, released a statement attacking Friske’s voting record and encouraging voters to support him instead.

“He voted against protecting spouses from marital rape, voted against making child marriage illegal, voted against tax cuts for Veterans -- and just this past week, he voted against making it illegal to create Al ‘deep fake’ pornography using the likeness of our daughters and wives,” he said.


“Neil deserves his time in court, and the people of the 107th District deserve better than Neil,” he wrote.

Friske posted to X, formerly Twitter, shortly after the arrest early Thursday morning.

Friske was recently one of only two lawmakers to vote against legislation banning the creation of non-consensual AI pornography, also known as deepfakes.

“I’m not going to cave to the pressure of special interest,” he wrote. “I’m not afraid of the false accusations, like ‘Friske is for AI Porn’ when a bill denies THE PEOPLE their rights to properly defend themselves.”

Friske referred to the legislation as a “Trojan-Donkey” bill, using a Trojan Horse metaphor to imply that the legislation amounts to an “attack on your rights” disguised as another policy.

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