Eastpointe mayor who blasted residents for high crime charged with felony

Less than two months ago, Eastpointe Mayor Monique Owens told residents of her own city that they were responsible for the crime in the city. Now, she's been charged with a felony for alleged fraud related to COVID relief from the federal government.

Owens was charged in Clinton Township on Thursday with one felony count of fraud by false pretenses between $1,000 and $20,000.

In court on Thursday, it was revealed that Owens was charged in connection to receiving $10,000 for a CARES act disclosure. The exact nature of what she allegedly did was not released. 

The CARES Act was a $2.2 trillion economic stimulus bill signed into law by then-President Donald Trump in March 2020 to assist communities during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Her attorney, Scott Weinberg, said there's no proof that Owens did anything wrong and they'll see the process through in court.

Since Owens has been sworn in as the city's first Black female mayor in 2021, she's hit multiple problems.

From a heated back-and-forth involving an alleged assault with a council member last summer to a federal lawsuit claiming she's silencing members of the public in November. And in January of this year, she told residents of the city to 'blame themselves' for the high crime rate.

Macomb County Prosecutor Pete Lucido says that Owens is innocent until proven guilty but the latest situation shows no one is above the law.

"It’s a sad day, I think, when anybody in authority is being charged with a crime. And in addition, somebody who has had some police background and training. It’s unfortunate though that being a leader and somebody who is governing to be even accused of a crime," Lucido said.

She was charged in Clinton Twp as all Eastpointe judges recused themselves due a conflict of interest.

We reached out to the city attorney for comment about how this could affect her future of mayor, but we have not heard back.