Source AP ©

Case of Mitt Romney's aide illegally running license check on reporter ended

An investigation into whether an aide to Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney illegally ran a license check on a reporter last spring was closed.

No charges were filed.

Attorney General Kelly Ayotte said Tuesday that her office found no evidence that anyone, during the time in question, had requested registration records for the car New York Times reporter Mark Leibovich was most likely driving.

She concluded no crime was committed.

Leibovich refused to cooperate, except to say that while he was following Romney in May, a staffer told him they had run his license plate.

In a June 16 article, Leibovich wrote that while following Romney's sport utility vehicle, he was "led to the shoulder and instructed to 'veer off' by a man wearing an ear piece who emerged from Mr. Romney's car." Leibovich said he was told, "We ran your license plate," and that no one was permitted to follow Romney's vehicle.

The staffer was Jay Garrity, who since has resigned from the campaign. He still is being investigated on allegations of impersonating a police officer in Massachusetts.

Ayotte wrote that based on the investigation and without further cooperation from Leibovich, "the investigation into Garrity reveals that no crime was committed with respect to Garrity's encounter with Leibovich on May 29, 2007."

Ayotte got involved after the head of a conservative political group, ConserveNH, sent her a copy of an Associated Press story about the incident and requested an investigation.

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