MONTGOMERY, Ala. – Thursday, Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange announced the investigation of Spencer Collier, former Secretary of the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency, is closed.
On February 17, Governor Robert Bentley had placed Collier on sick leave for allegedly disobeying his instructions regarding Collier’s interactions with state prosecutors. ALEA then performed a broad internal inquiry into Collier’s conduct as ALEA Secretary.
On March 22, Governor Bentley fired Collier, stating publicly that he relied on the ALEA inquiry in doing so. Governor Bentley and ALEA issued public statements that the results of the ALEA investigation indicated possible “misuse of state funds” and were being referred to the Office of Attorney General Luther Strange. That day, the Office of the Attorney General received the complaint and other information from ALEA, Strange said.
Strange said the Special Prosecutions Division of the Attorney General’s Office conducted a complete investigation of the ALEA allegations against Collier.
“For efficiency, and to ensure public confidence in the investigation, all of the information from ALEA was presented to the Montgomery County Special Grand Jury. Numerous witnesses, including senior ALEA leadership, were called to testify before the Special Grand Jury,” Strange said.
Strange said during the criminal investigative proceeding, over the course of the investigation, no witness provided credible evidence of criminal “misuse of state funds.”
No witness provided credible evidence of any other criminal violation on the part of former Secretary Collier. Finally, no witness established a credible basis for the initiation of a criminal inquiry in the first place, Strange said.
Strange said the Montgomery County Special Grand Jury reviewed the evidence in the case and declined to act on the allegations against Collier.
Collier told WHNT News 19 today, “We wish to thank the AG’s office for reviewing facts and not innuendos. The AG determined that there wasn’t enough evidence to even start an investigation. Gov Bentley and Rebekah Mason sent Stabler to ALEA to find anything. I was actually terminated for cooperating with the Lee Co Investigation.”