Ex-Macomb County Clerk Karen Spranger Arraigned, Released On Bond

She faces a single larceny charge

May 03, 2019 - 12:56 pm

WARREN (WWJ) - Former Macomb County Clerk Karen Spranger appeared in court via video Friday on a single charge of larceny. 

Spranger was arrested at a Warren Tim Horton's Thursday afternoon, one day after a felony warrant was issued for her arrest. A plea of not guily was entered on her behalf.

Macomb County Prosecutor Eric Smith said Spranger was caught on camera at bank ATMs stealing cash from an account belonging to an elderly acquaintance.  In total, Smith said, $1,600 was taken without permission from the woman, for whom Spranger worked as a caregiver. 

Spranger spent Thursday night in jail. Despite having allegedly hid from police, she has been released on a $3,000 personal reconnaissance bond. 

Attorney Joseph Arnone told WWJ's Charlie Langton he just got the call asking him to represent Spranger Friday morning, and hadn't yet had a chance to speak with her. 

"It's a felony charge," said Arnone, "but it's not the most serious offense that we see in the court system here. Right now the matter's pending, we're gonna conduct an investigation, and we'll find out what's going on here."

Arnone said Spranger's sister told him that Spranger was unaware she had a warrant. Adding that she's "not a dangerous person," he said Spranger will be staying with her sister as she awaits her next court appearance later this month.

"We're gonna maintain the presumption of innocence in this case until a full investigation is conducted, and we'll move forward from here," Arnone said. "I mean, that's all I know. I know about as much as you guys know, OK?" 

The 66-year-old Spranger was a political unknown when she we elected to the position of Macomb County Clerk as a Republican in 2016. Known for her bizarre and erratic behavior while in office, she was ousted in March of 2018 after it was discovered she'd lied about her residency on documents she filed to run.

If convicted on the larceny charge, Spranger faces up to five years in prison.