Daily Briefs

Ex-U of Michigan doctor awaits prison after plea agreement

DETROIT (AP) — A former University of Michigan doctor accused of possessing child pornography and inappropriate conduct with young patients is awaiting a prison sentence after reaching a plea agreement.

The Ann Arbor News reports 46-year-old Mark Hoeltzel of Ann Arbor pleaded guilty last week in federal court to one felony count of enticement of a minor. Records say he created a Facebook account in 2017 to contact girls while pretending to be a teenage boy.

Sentencing is Dec. 13. A presentencing report calls for him to serve 14-17 years in prison.

Hoeltzel was arrested in February after being treated for sex addiction. State regulators suspended the pediatric rheumatology specialist’s license in December. Hoeltzel practiced at Children’s Mercy Hospital in Kansas City, Missouri, before going to the University of Michigan in 2013.


Leonard: Nessel ‘unfit’ to be AG due to abusive campaign

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Republican Tom Leonard said Monday that his Democratic opponent, Dana Nessel, is “unfit” to be Michigan’s attorney general because of allegations that she verbally abused campaign staffers and created a toxic, fear-based working environment.

Leonard held a news conference with a half-dozen law enforcement leaders three days after the Lansing-based political publication MIRS first reported on the situation. The Associated Press on Monday confirmed the accounts from ex-senior adviser Abby Dart, who worked on Nessel’s campaign for nearly 10 months before leaving in June, and Brian Stone — who was let go as communications director last week after two days on the job.

“This is simply unacceptable for anybody that wants to be the state’s top law enforcement officer,” said Leonard, the state House speaker and a former prosecutor who warned that Nessel would sow “chaos” and “dysfunction” if she led the 500-employee office. “Simply put, she is unfit to be the state’s next attorney general.”

Nessel, an attorney and ex-prosecutor, did not directly address her former aides’ allegations, instead calling Leonard’s attack a “ridiculous and desperate ploy” because he is behind in polling. A Detroit News/WDIV survey of 600 likely voters released this month showed her leading Leonard, 42 percent to 29 percent, with 24 percent undecided. The poll had a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.

Term-limited Republican Attorney General Bill Schuette is running for governor.

Dart, a veteran of Democratic politics, said Nessel yelled at and made abusive comments toward campaign workers, including in writing.

“Obviously candidates, particularly first-time candidates, are under a lot of stress,” she told the AP. “But that doesn’t give them the authority to have the behavior that’s just really out of line, really out of line.”