Daily Briefs

Michigan Senate approves bills to combat mail theft

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Legislation advancing in Michigan would combat mail theft that law enforcers say is an increasing problem across the state.

The Senate voted unanimously Thursday to send two bills to the House.

They would make the theft of mail and packages a state crime. Law enforcement says U.S. postal inspectors are currently overwhelmed with investigating what is a federal crime.

According to testimony in committee, there were nearly 19,000 mail and theft complaints in Michigan in 2017 and 2018 — including 17,000 complaints that packages from Amazon had been taken off doorsteps and from other locations.

A first violation would be a misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in jail. Repeat violators could go to prison.


Michigan Supreme Court suspends judge but doesn’t stop pay

BRIGHTON, Mich. (AP) — A Livingston County judge facing criminal charges and ethics violations has been suspended with pay by the Michigan Supreme Court.

The court suspended Theresa Brennan but didn’t stop her $143,000 salary. It’s not clear what work she’s been doing: Brennan’s caseload was yanked last June by the county’s chief judge.
The Judicial Tenure Commission, a watchdog agency over the judiciary, had requested that her salary be put in escrow.

Brennan is accused of perjury and destroying evidence in her divorce case. In the misconduct matter, she’s accused of many ethics violations in how she ran her office as well as for a relationship with a state police detective during a murder trial.

The ethics case is being presented by the staff of the Judicial Tenure Commission. Brennan says she’s a victim of sexism.


Man convicted in slaying of teen who accused him of rape

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) — A western Michigan man has been convicted of first-degree murder in the slaying of a 16-year-old girl who accused him of rape.

A Grand Rapids jury issued a guilty verdict Thursday for 43-year-old Quinn James of Wyoming, Michigan.

Mujey Dumbuya’s partially clothed body was found in January 2018 in woods in Kalamazoo, about 50 miles (80 kilometers) southeast of her Grand Rapids-area home. She had been strangled.

James was a maintenance worker at Dumbuya’s school and she accused him of sexual assault in 2017. Authorities say James killed the girl while free on a $100,000 cash bond in the assault case.

He was sentenced last December to 20 to 30 years in prison for third-degree criminal sexual conduct.

His sentencing in the killing is scheduled for March 25.