New Jersey prosecutors are no longer seeking a criminal misconduct charge against New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie related to the “Bridgegate” lane-closure scandal on the George Washington Bridge in September 2013.
In a letter to Judge Bonnie Mizdol on Friday the Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office said that a “charge cannot be proven beyond a reasonable doubt” and so it “will not pursue the charge of official misconduct against defendant.”
Bill Brennan, an activist from New Jersey, filed a complaint in September against Christie with Fort Lee Municipal Court for alleged involvement in a scheme to exact political payback against a local mayor who did not support his re-election bid in 2013. First Assistant Prosecutor John Higgins noted in the letter that his office still reviewed the case even though “[a] private citizen may not prosecute serious crimes.”
Brennan told New York Daily News he still hopes to make a successful probable cause case in court Thursday and get a special prosecutor appointed.
Earlier this month Mizdol reversed a decision by Judge Roy McGeady that found sufficient probable cause.
Two former aides Christie’s have been convicted in federal court for charges for the lane-closure scandal after being indicted for conspiracy, fraud and other charges.
Christie himself was spared and has denied any involvement. His office applauded the prosecutor’s office decision to end what it called a “baseless fiasco.”
“The Governor is gratified that the Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office has ended this baseless fiasco began by Mr. Brennan and perpetuated by Judge McGeady,” said Christie spokesman Brian Murray. “After a thorough review, the Prosecutors Office was crystal clear: there is no basis for this charge against the Governor and there was no basis for Judge McGeady to ever have found otherwise. It is right and appropriate that this injustice against the Governor is finally over.”