Michigan sheriff urged to resign after ties to domestic terrorists in governor kidnapping plot emerge

Barry County Sheriff Dar Leaf, front right, speaks to members of the Michigan Liberty Militia during the American Patriot Rally Sheriffs Speak Out event at Rosa Parks Circle in downtown Grand Rapids, Michigan on Monday May 18 2020 ((MLive / Grand Rapids Press via the Associated Press))
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Michigan residents have called for the resignation of Barry County Sheriff, Dar Leaf, after it was revealed he shared a stage with one of the men arrested in the allegedly foiled plot to kidnap Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.
William Null, a member of the Michigan Liberty Militia group, was arrested along with 12 others last Friday for allegedly conspiring to kidnap the governor from their summer home.
According to WWMT, Mr. Null was charged with material assistance for acts of terrorism and possession of firearms on behalf of a crime.
Following the suspect's arrest last week, it was reported that Sheriff Leaf, along with other members of the militia group, shared a stage with Mr. Zero to protest Ms. Whitmer's stay at home in May.
According to Newsweek, a protest with at least 160 people is scheduled in Hastings, Michigan on Tuesday to demand Mr. Leaf's removal from his post.
The protest was organized by Olivia Bennett, who is running for the position of Barry County Commissioner.
She told Michigan Live on Monday, "We do not accuse [Sheriff Leaf] of knowing about the kidnapping act, and we do not accuse him of being a part of it at all."
Ms. Bennett added, “Some people in this county have tried to make the link and have said we should investigate Dar for it, but I'm not there or whatever I'm suggesting.
"What I am suggesting is his actions and his words that encourage people who would try to do such things."
Mr Leaf, who allegedly refused to enforce Ms Whitmer's coronavirus measures, spoke on Friday about Mr Null and his brother Michael, who was also arrested in connection with the failed conspiracy.
He told Fox17: "I was shocked didn't see this come with these guys but we still can't judge them here in the media, they have a right to a fair trial."
When asked whether he had regretted standing on stage with any of the men charged in the alleged conspiracy, he expressed no remorse and asked whether the group was actually trying to make an "arrest".
"It's just a charge," he said. “Are you trying to kidnap? Because a lot of people are angry with the governor and want her arrested. So are they trying to arrest or was it an attempted kidnapping? "
Mr Leaf added, "In fact, these guys are innocent until proven guilty so I'm not even sure they had a part of it."
Mr. Zero faces 20 years in prison for alleged conspiracy and is on $ 250,000 (£ 191,312) bond.
State and federal law enforcement officials have alleged the group planned the alleged abduction two months before they were arrested.
The FBI said the men wanted to arrest Ms. Whitmer before the November 3rd national election and "bring her to justice" in Wisconsin.
The group allegedly felt that Ms. Whitmer had "uncontrolled power" over coronavirus measures and had planned "various acts of violence" for their conspiracy, according to the Associated Press.
Detroit's US attorney Matthew Schneider told reporters on Friday: “We all in Michigan can't agree on politics, but these disagreements should never mean violence.
"Violence was prevented today."
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The Michigan County sheriff says the governor's plot may have been an "arrest."
Suspect in Whitmer's kidnapping plan pardoned for previous crimes last year

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