Rep. Courser releases messages he claims came from blackmailer - WNEM TV 5

Rep. Courser releases messages he claims came from blackmailer

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LAPEER COUNTY, MI (WNEM) -

Embattled State. Rep. Todd Courser has released a statement on his Facebook page today regarding claims a blackmailer forced him to attempt a smear campaign on himself to cover-up a sex scandal with State Rep. Cindy Gamrat. Courser also attached screen shots of the messages he claims he received from the blackmailer. The statement posted on Courser's Facebook page is below.

Representative Todd Courser today has released blackmail text messages he received since May showing that he was subject to threats and cyber-spying.

The texts show Courser was told to resign his office or else information about his personal indiscretions would be released.

Courser said he has been in contact with authorities over a period of time and is urging that the proper authorities investigate the matter.

He said he will be exonerated on claims that he used state resources and staff improperly. Rather, Courser said the actions that he took regarding his staff was meant to try and pin down exactly who is blackmailer was.

"These texts from the blackmailer show a lot. They are very intimate. They were freakishly stalking. It was in this environment that I was acting to find out who was involved in the blackmailing," Courser said. "They involved access to conversations, texts, locations, and family info including private cell data. It was constant surveillance from January forward."

Based on select information he released and who he release that information to, he has concluded that his former staff worked with political consultant David Forsmark to concoct a plot to remove him from office.

Only Josh Cline, Ben Graham and Keith Allard had the access to the information he was confronted with by his blackmailer.

Courser said the blackmailer told him he was meeting with the Speakers office on August 3, which goes to his suspicions that the Speaker was somehow involved in a plot to remove him.
"I'm Not sure how forth coming the Speakers office is with their appointments, but if they are indeed investigating I am not sure they can investigate themselves and their role in this," he said. "How involved were they? What did they know? When did they know it?

"I welcome an investigation into the allegations against me; and into my claim that there is a blackmailing effort that is ongoing and attempting me to resign; if there was any misuse of state resources then there should be consequences; I am confident with full and forthright investigation that I will be fully exonerated and that no state resources were ever used inappropriately. I asked Mr. Graham to assist on his own time and he declined."

Courser acknowledges the May 20 email he sent was a low point in his life and "inexcusable." It was the product of an immense amount of stress about his personal safety and that of his family combined with a lack of food and sleep.

Blackmailer urges Courser to resign or information about his personal indiscretions would be released.

"In no way could I ever submit to that sort of pressure and so I simply refused and instead set out to do what I could to expose the person or persons involved," he said.

Courser said he did not engage with the blackmailer, who also was contacting Representative Gamrat and other contacts of Courser and Gamrat, including financial supporters.

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