State police investigating Rep. Steve Marino for domestic abuse claim made by fellow lawmaker

Republican State Rep Steve Marino was stripped of his legislative duties Wednesday after Democratic State Rep Mari Manoogian accused him of domestic abuse.

"None of us are immune to a volatile relationship," she said in a statement.  "It can happen right here in our legislature where abuse of power and threats to ruin a colleague’s reputation, as well as threats of public shaming, can be used to intimidate fellow members of the legislature."

State House Speaker Jason Wentworth (R-Clare) removed Marino from his committee assignments including his chairmanship of the commerce committee.

"I also know that Speaker Wentworth is a very careful and respected leader who wouldn’t take the actions that he took without reason," said Jamie Roe.

Roe is a GOP political consultant.  

"I would hope that we find that there’s a misunderstanding, but it sure looks like that there’s a problem here that needs to be addressed," Roe said.

A spokeswoman for Michigan State Police said they are looking into a complaint filed against Marino which they received late Tuesday, but would not provide further details.

Marino has served in the State House since 2016.

FOX 2 stopped by his home in Harrison Township and called him for comment, but received no response.

Republican Rep. Steve Marino.

Republican Rep. Steve Marino. 

Some of his constituents were eager to weigh in.

"He needs to be investigated to find out if he really did it or not," said Holly Beecher, a resident of Harrison Township.

"I don't believe anyone should get away with domestic violence, ever," said Lisa Highlund, another resident. "I don’t think anybody should be thrown in jail for something they didn’t do, but suspended from something like that kind of a job when you’re holding up the law, of course."

Wentworth released a statement saying:

"I will always prioritize the safety of state legislators and those who are serving their community at the State Capitol. Once I learned of this situation, I took immediate action. Going forward, the House is honoring Rep. Manoogian’s request for privacy while others look into the allegations."

Rep. Steve Marino (R-Harrison Township), left, Rep. Mari Manoogian (D-Birmingham).

Rep. Steve Marino (R-Harrison Township), left, Rep. Mari Manoogian (D-Birmingham).

State Rep. Donna Lasinski (D-Scio Township), the Democratic House Leader, said in a statement:

"I stand by Rep. Manoogian and her request for privacy. Our caucus is acutely aware of the challenges that come with being a female elected official and will not tolerate any threats of abuse, retribution, and public embarrassment that are used to intimidate women."