Charge issued against Davison school board member accused of threatening U.P. clerk

Matthew Smith allegedly called the Houghton County Clerk in March 2020, threatening to poison and kill her dogs.
Published: Jun. 22, 2021 at 5:14 PM EDT
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FLINT, Mich. (WJRT) - (6/22/2021) - A Mid-Michigan school board member is facing up to six months in jail, accused of threatening a UP Clerk.

It’s a case ABC12 first reported on in October.

In the midst of an already turbulent election season, the Houghton County Clerk said three people called in the middle of the night, threatening to kill her dogs.

Michigan State Police traced one of the voices on the other line to a Davison School Board member in Genesee County.

23-year-old Matthew Smith is now facing a misdemeanor charge of maliciously using a telephone.

“I sure didn’t do anything to them, Ann. So I don’t know why they targeted me, but they forever changed my life,” Clerk Jennifer Kelly said.

On March 6, 2020 around 1 a.m., the Houghton County Clerk said she answered the phone to a man saying he was with a local TV station and wanted to film her home. When Kelly said no she said the caller told her she’d never be re-elected because her home and office are a mess.

Then, the Clerk said the man threatened to poison and kill her dogs and then throw them in a dumpster.

“I had to seek counseling. I apparently now have some sort of PTSD. Little things will set me off at home,” Kelly explained.

The fear from that phone call has crippled her. Kelly said in the 15 months since, she’s constantly looking over her shoulder. She no longer sleeps with her dresser in front of her already locked door, but she still can’t shut the shower curtain.

“I want a judge to tell these three punks to leave me alone, don’t ever contact me again, keep my name out of anything,” Kelly said.

She shared she cried as she learned one of the alleged callers, now identified by police as Davison School Board member and former Davison Township Deputy Clerk, Matthew Smith, is charged.

The 23-year-old is facing the misdemeanor charge of malicious use of a telephone.

“If he is that crooked, to be calling an elected official that he does not know and saying the things that he did to me, I don’t believe the man deserves the honor to be an elected official, that’s my personal opinion,” Kelly said.

She hoped the charge against Smith would be more severe.

And, Kelly is still waiting to learn if the two other men she believes were involved will face any consequences.

One of them was Kelly’s opponent in the last election, Justin Kasieta. The AG’s Office has his case. The police report said he admitted Smith made the phone call.

Smith has previously told police that someone ‘spoofed’ his number. ABC12 reached out for a comment from Smith’s attorney. He has not returned the request.

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