WARREN, Mich. — More than a year after her surprise election, the clerk in a Detroit-area county is defending herself against allegations that she didn’t live at a house in Warren.

In a court filing, Karen Spranger’s attorney says she was poor in 2016 but still able to live at a house with no utilities. Frank Cusumano Jr. says Spranger was unemployed before winning the Macomb County clerk’s job, which pays $109,000 a year.

The county claims Spranger didn’t live at the Warren address when she filed to run for office and is disqualified from holding the job.

County attorney John Schapka tells the Detroit Free Press that the house had belonged to Spranger’s mother but has been in Spranger’s name since 2012.

A judge from St. Clair County is hearing the case.

Information from: Detroit Free Press, http://www.freep.com

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