Ex-tribe police chief case goes back to county circuit court

ST. IGNACE (AP) — The case of a former police chief in the Upper Peninsula who’s been barred from running for public office because of a corruption conviction is headed back to county court.

Fred Paquin wanted to run for St. Ignace City Council in 2013 and 2015 but was told a conviction disqualified him under Michigan’s Constitution. He pleaded guilty in 2010 to misusing federal money given to the Sault Tribe of Chippewa Indians when he was the tribe’s police chief.

Paquin says he shouldn’t be barred from running for city council because the tribe is sovereign.

The appeals court ruled against Paquin.

Michigan’s Supreme Court ruled state tribal governments do not fall under the state constitutional provision preventing some people from seeking public office. It returned Paquin’s case to Mackinac County Circuit Court.