Written by Ashton Snyder on
 April 17, 2024

Former Michigan Speaker Lee Chatfield And Wife Face Embezzlement Charges Amid Assault Probe

Former Michigan House leader Lee Chatfield and his wife, Stephanie, are embroiled in a scandal following charges of financial misconduct. Investigations initiated by sexual assault allegations against Lee Chatfield have now implicated him and his wife in serious financial crimes.

According to Daily Mail, the investigation into Lee Chatfield began after his sister-in-law, Rebekah Chatfield, accused him of sexual assault starting when she was 15 years old.

Rebekah's claims, dating back to Lee's tenure as a teacher at Northern Michigan Baptist Bible Church, did not lead to sexual assault charges due to insufficient evidence. However, they sparked further scrutiny of Lee's financial activities.

Financial Misuse Uncovered Through Personal Trauma

Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel acknowledged Rebekah Chatfield's role in bringing these issues to light despite the lack of charges for the sexual assault allegations.

The expansion of the investigation revealed misappropriations involving the Peninsula Fund, described by Nessel as an "unregulated slush fund." Over $5 million was raised through this and other political funds under Lee Chatfield’s management, raising questions about their use.

Lee Chatfield, now facing 13 charges, including conducting a criminal enterprise and embezzlement, could see up to 20 years in prison if convicted. The charges stem from the alleged misuse of substantial sums, including over $2 million raised in 2020 alone.

Family and Aides Entangled in the Scandal

Further investigations have also drawn in Lee Chatfield’s brother, who was accused of cashing a $5,000 check from a political fund only to return $3,500 to Lee. Meanwhile, Stephanie Chatfield reportedly used $132,000 from the Peninsula Fund to repay her husband’s credit card debts over 14 months.

The financial discrepancies have also implicated former top aides to Lee Chatfield. Rob and Anne Minard face charges of embezzling from nonprofit funds, to which they have pleaded not guilty.

Rebekah Chatfield has turned to social media to voice her frustration and seek justice, even as the formal legal avenues have so far not supported her sexual assault claims.

Legal Repercussions and Calls for Reform

Lee Chatfield’s attorney, Mary Chartier, criticized the investigation's length and expressed confidence in challenging the charges, suggesting that the prolonged investigation timeframe indicates weak evidence.

Dana Nessel has also criticized the Michigan Campaign Finance Act, labeling it ineffective in preventing such crimes. This has fueled discussions about the need for comprehensive reform in state financial disclosure laws.

Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson has echoed the call for stronger anti-corruption measures, promising continued efforts to implement more robust laws akin to those in other states.


This scandal highlights the intertwining of personal misconduct and public trust, bringing to light the alleged financial misdeeds of a once-prominent political figure and the systemic vulnerabilities that allowed such actions to go unchecked. As the legal proceedings progress, they may yet prompt a significant overhaul of how political funds are managed and monitored in Michigan.

Author Image

About Ashton Snyder

Independent conservative news without a leftist agenda.
© 2024 - American Tribune - All rights reserved
Privacy Policy