September 10, 2019
LANSING - The following statement from Attorney General Dana Nessel was released September 10, 2019:
“Good afternoon. I want to thank you for taking the time to be here this afternoon on such short notice. I asked you to be here because ethics, integrity and transparency in office and in government are incredibly important to me. I am committed to being as transparent with you today as I possibly can be under the circumstances.
"As many of you may already know, Brian Kolodziej was until Friday an Assistant Attorney General here. He was hired by the Schuette Administration in September of 2018 and immediately assigned to handle criminal sexual assault cases – exactly the work he had done for the Macomb County Prosecutor’s office.
"On Thursday, September 5th, I was notified by the Michigan State Police (MSP) of allegations of prosecutorial misconduct involving now former Assistant Attorney General Brian Kolodziej – specifically, his alleged involvement in an improper relationship with a victim in a case assigned to him shortly after he was hired last September. Within an hour of this notice, Mr. Kolodziej was placed on administrative leave.
“The next morning Mr. Kolodziej admitted to engaging in the relationship and subsequently resigned from his employment with the Department of Attorney General in lieu of immediate termination. The MSP has opened a criminal investigation and I have informed them that my team will fully cooperate with all elements of their investigation. I have also requested the Prosecuting Attorneys Coordinating Council’s prompt appointment of another prosecutorial agency to assist in the event MSP requires prosecutorial or investigative services.
“Lastly, I have submitted all relevant information to the Attorney Grievance Commission for review, and both the court and the defense counsel in the case relevant to Mr. Kolodziej’s alleged misconduct have been notified. A copy of that letter will be made available to you after the news conference.
“Most important, we also have been in constant communication with the victims on his cases.
“While the ongoing investigation means I cannot provide any additional details at this time, it is important to make clear that I expect everyone who works here to hold themselves to the highest standards of conduct when working on behalf of this office. Those standards require that all of our employees demonstrate honesty and integrity in the administration of justice and that their conduct always conforms to the ethical rules of our profession. Staff who fail to live up to these requirements will have no place in my Department.
“We have hundreds of dedicated public servants who respect their work and the trust we put in them. Several of them have already been assigned to take on the cases assigned to Mr. Kolodziej.
“Finally, let me say this: This man’s actions do not define our department, but our response will.”