Ethical Allegations Not Enough To Oust Brizzi
Crime Must Be Proven To Remove Prosecutor
Last Updated: 1153 days ago
There are more calls from embattled Marion County Prosecutor Carl Brizzi to resign, but ousting him from office would a complicated process, according to Indiana law.On Thursday, former prosecutor Scott Newman echoed previous calls from Mark Massa, the Republican candidate running to succeed Brizzi, and both county chairmen for Brizzi to step down.It comes after The Indianapolis Business Journal reported that Brizzi ordered reduced charges against a drug suspect represented by a friend and business partner.But no matter how many people call for Brizzi to step down, barring a voluntary resignation, voters in Indiana cannot petition for an election to remove an officeholder they don't like.The only way to remove the prosecutor would be for him to be charged with or convicted of a crime, 6News' Norman Cox reported.According to Indiana law, a citizen can petition a circuit or superior court to appoint a special prosecutor. After a hearing, the judge can appoint one if he "finds by clear and convincing evidence that the appointment is necessary to avoid an actual conflict of interest or if there is probable cause to believe that the prosecutor has committed a crime."The special prosecutor could then conduct an investigation, which could result in him or her filing charges or seeking a grand jury indictment, prompting a trial.The charge would be enough to warrant the suspension of the prosecutor's law license, which would prohibit him from running the office until the charges were resolved, while a conviction would mean the permanent loss of the license and permanent removal from office.Still, there has been no suggestion that Brizzi committed a crime, just charges of serious conflicts of interest.Brizzi, who is not seeking a third term, said he will not leave his position until his term is up.