Daily Briefs

Court told to handle case about judge’s access to ballot

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — A court has been ordered to reopen a lawsuit by a Michigan appellate judge who is trying to get around an age limit and stay in office.

Peter O'Connell can't run for re-election in 2018 because he'll be 70. So he's suing the state to try to get his name on the ballot this year as an incumbent for a different seat on the appeals court. A term lasts six years.

The Court of Claims dismissed the case in March, saying it didn't have jurisdiction. But the appeals court reversed that decision in an opinion released Friday.

O'Connell has been told he can run but that he needs to collect signatures and can't be listed as the incumbent.


Lack of jury oath at trial gets Supreme Court’s attention

DETROIT (AP) — Will an attempted murder conviction be thrown out because the jury wasn't given an oath?

The Michigan Supreme Court is interested in the case of Darrin Crawford. Wayne County jurors who convicted him in 2013 weren't sworn in with an oath before the start of trial.

Crawford's attorney says it's a major error that should spoil the convictions. The state appeals court disagreed, but the Supreme Court says it might take action. Legal briefs are due in the weeks ahead.

In 2012, jurors were given the wrong oath at a Wayne County murder trial. In that case, the Supreme Court said Brandon Cain still got a fair trial and reinstated his convictions.


Honigman attorney honored by Lawrence University for service

Honigman Miller Schwartz and Cohn partner William O. Hochkammer received the Gertrude Breithaupt Jupp Outstanding Service Award from Lawrence University. Hochkammer, a 1966 Lawrence graduate, has served on the university’s board of trustees for 22 years, as chair from 2005 to 2007, and is the only member in its history to complete the term limit and be invited to rejoin the board. He was instrumental in the success of the university’s $160 million fundraising campaign that ended in 2011 and currently serves on the leadership team of the university’s $75 million endowed scholarship campaign.

Hochkammer is a well-respected health care attorney and is the senior attorney involved in the firm’s extensive practice relating to alternative risk financing vehicles, including the formation and representation of captive insurance companies. He has been involved in alternative risk financing since 1974. Hochkammer formerly served as Honigman’s chairman and CEO.

The Best Lawyers in America, Michigan Super Lawyers and DBusiness’ Top Lawyers have recognized Hochkammer as an outstanding attorney. In 2004, he was honored by Northwestern University with an Alumni Merit Award.

Hochkammer earned a J.D., cum laude, from Northwestern University School of Law and a B.A. in economics from Lawrence University.