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Flint Police under investigation over illegal background check

The Michigan State Police looking into allegations that a member of the Flint Police Department conducted an illegal background check. (Photo Credit: Sarah Jaeger)

FLINT, Mich. -- The Michigan State Police looking into allegations that a member of the Flint Police Department conducted an illegal background check.

The search was conducted on Arthur Woodson, one of the candidates for mayor and the man who lead the recall efforts against current Mayor Karen Weaver.

Woodson says he was told by a friend that someone allegedly ran a criminal history on him. He believes to get damaging information to post on social media.

Police use the Law Enforcement Information Network, or LEIN as it’s known, to for a number of reasons, most notably when you are pulled over. Information stored in the system: aliases, social security number, where you live, your local, state, and federal criminal history and even your fingerprints.

While police do not need a reason to run your license plate, your criminal history can only be seen if it is part of an investigation.

"What you can’t do, just because you’re inquisitive, you can’t run a criminal history," says Michigan State Police Lieutenant David Kaiser. "Police officers or dispatchers who violate that law, it’s actually a misdemeanor and you can be criminally charged."

"We have a constitutional right to privacy," says Woodson. "For people to abuse that and take the constitutional right away from you is upsetting."

Woodson filed his complaint with the Michigan State Police in August.

Notice was given to Flint Chief Timothy Johnson on October 3rd. His department has 45 days to respond to this ongoing investigation.

We tried reaching out to the Flint Police but they have yet to respond.


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