Ohio Attorney General Asks Lorain County Prosecutor to Review Tanisha Anderson Case for Conflicts of Interest

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine, flanked by Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Tim McGinty, at a 2014 news conference.
Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine, flanked by Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Tim McGinty, at a 2014 news conference. (Nick Castele / ideastream)
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by Nick Castele

The Ohio Attorney General’s office is asking an outside prosecutor to review the case file of a Cleveland woman who died in police custody. The review would search for potential conflicts of interest.

Tanisha Anderson, 37, died in 2014 as police were trying to take her to St. Vincent Charity Medical Center. The medical examiner ruled the death a homicide, and ruled the cause as sudden death associated with heart disease, bipolar disorder and physical restraint in the prone position.

Since then, the case has been in the hands of several agencies.

The Cuyahoga County sheriff investigated and turned the case over to the county prosecutor. Earlier this month, the prosecutor asked the state AG’s office to take on the case, citing a conflict of interest.

And now the attorney general’s office is asking a judge to allow an outside agency to go through the case file, according to a court filing provided by the office. They’re looking for what’s known as Garrity information—essentially, any compelled testimony from public employees in which they weren’t allowed to invoke their right against self-incrimination.

If state prosecutors see this information, by law it could invalidate a criminal case.

And so, the state is turning to the Lorain County prosecutor’s office. They want Lorain County’s staff to go through the file and weed out any of this Garrity information.

When that’s finished, the case would go back to the AG’s office, and the case would continue.

For now, the state is awaiting approval from Judge John Russo, the administrative and presiding judge in Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court.

Read the motion below:

 

 

 

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