News

Ex-Macomb County Prosecutor Eric Smith gets 21 months in fraud scheme

Smith also facing embezzlement charges at the state level
Eric Smith Macomb County
Posted at 1:27 PM, Feb 16, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-16 18:15:55-05

(WXYZ) — Former Macomb County Prosecutor Eric Smith has been sentenced to 21 months in federal prison.

A judge sentenced Smith on Wednesday afternoon after he allegedly stole campaign money and then tried to cover it up.

Smith will also have to pay a $20,000 fine and repay nearly $70,000. After he is out of prison, he will have 18 months of supervised release.

Smith apologized to the court during sentencing, and the judge called it a "betrayal of public trust."

Federal officials say Smith spent $75,000 of campaign money on personal expenses, and then admitted to it, asking two friends to lie for him so he could get away with it.

Smith pleaded guilty and the sentencing guidelines called for 15-21 months.

On top of these federal charges, Smith is facing 10 different felony counts at the state level, including five counts of embezzlement.

After testimony in his preliminary exam, a judge decided there was enough evidence to prove that Smith misused more than $500,000 in drug forfeiture funds and kept them in four off-book bank accounts over several years.

If convicted, Smith faces up to 20 years in prison for that state case.