Attorney claims blackmail against trooper - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Attorney claims blackmail against trooper

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The special prosecutor investigating the death of an Iowa man in Missouri has asked to be pulled off the case, citing a conflict of interest.

Brandon Ellingson, of Clive, drowned in the Lake of the Ozarks last May. Accused of boating while drunk, he was handcuffed by a Missouri Highway Patrol trooper. During transport, he fell out of the boat and drowned.

Witnesses said his life vest wasn't on properly. That arresting trooper -- Anthony Piercy -- was cleared of any wrongdoing.

Amanda Grellner was appointed as a special prosecutor for the case, which was reopened when a witness reportedly came forward with new information. Now, she said a trooper, Sgt. Randy Henry, was blackmailing her in connection to situation involving her son three years ago. She said Henry "...tried to convince others that I was somehow beholden to the Patrol and owed them a favor. Nothing could be further from the truth."

Grellner asked to be removed, citing a conflict of interest.

"He's made an allegation that I'm involved in things I'm not involved in," Grellner said.

Henry has not publicly responded to these allegations. Missouri Highway Patrol is not commenting either.

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