MOUNT CLEMENS, Mich. (FOX 2) - Macomb County hired a law firm to investigate allegations and complaints of unlawful behavior and practices by Prosecutor Pete Lucido.
"There were recommendations in that report and we’re going to take them very seriously because our job is to protect the employees," said Macomb County Executive Mark Hackel. "We got the findings and now they we have to make a determination that will protect those employees.".
The firm looked into allegations that the prosecutor used county resources for personal and campaign activities, complaints of sexual harassment and discrimination.
But the prosecutor says the claims are baseless and it’s really his efforts to clean up corruption.
"You have to go ahead and shake a few trees if you want to leave to fall, I’m shaking the trees right now," Lucido said. "Were the things even that egregious to go do this? Or were they taken out of context?"
The prosecutor says claims about kisses were taken out of context
"It was about Hershey kisses that were right there on the countertop," he said. "It had nothing to do with give me a kiss."
The prosecutor says he did not provide responses to the firm as it did its investigation because it did not have the legal right to investigate.
"Under what authority does anyone have - including the executive's office - to start an independent investigation," Lucido said. "They have a collective bargaining agreement that they said you must have it followed. So if anyone has a complaint about anything, they file a grievance."
But Hackel sees it differently.
"It’s not 'he versus I' - I'm obligated by law to do this," he said. "We could’ve done this in-house but we chose not to. (We wanted to) make sure there was no question of impropriety our politics coming into play here."
But the prosecutor says he’s only trying to do his job and he wishes Hackel would let him.
"If (Hackel) wants the office he should’ve ran for it," Lucido said.
But instead Hackel says he will take the findings and recommendations of the report and determine his next steps.
"A lot of concerns are going to be coming his way as a result of these findings," Hackel said. "And I think he knows that, that’s why he’s trying to distract and make this more political."
Macomb County Prosecutor Pete Lucido