Daily Briefs

Supreme Court clarifies proper venue in drug-related death

MONROE, Mich. (AP) — A man accused of providing drugs that led to a fatal overdose won’t face charges in the county where the death occurred.

The Michigan Supreme Court agreed with Romon McBurrows and said Monroe County is the wrong venue.

Nicholas Abraham died at home in Monroe County in December 2016, but he obtained heroin mixed with fentanyl earlier in Wayne County. McBurrows is charged with providing the deadly mix. He’s pleaded not guilty.

The court’s unanimous opinion Monday was written by Justice Elizabeth Clement. She says, “The mere fact that a death was felt in a county does not make that county the proper venue.”


Court denies inmates’ appeal of $900 award in Ramadan suit

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — A federal appeals court has denied four Muslim inmates who challenged a jury’s decision to award them $900 in damages after Michigan prison officials did not provide them with adequate meals during Ramadan.

The three-judge panel on Monday upheld a lower judge’s refusal to hold a new trial on the damages.

The jury had determined that Michigan Department of Corrections officials violated the inmates’ constitutional rights by no longer giving Muslims prisoners bigger meals during breakfast and dinner to accommodate their fasting. Jurors awarded $150 for each Ramadan that was disrupted in 2011 and 2012 — or $900 total to the inmates.

The prisoners appealed, arguing jurors ignored their spiritual harms. The appellate judges said spiritual injuries are hard to quantify, and they saw no reason to second-guess jurors’ determination.


Dem trying to unseat Michigan’s Amash raised $100K in 1 week

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) — The Democrat running to replace Michigan Rep. Justin Amash says she raised $100,000 in the first week since announcing her campaign.

Attorney Hillary Scholten of Grand Rapids joined the race last week, days after Amash said he was leaving the Republican party and would seek re-election as an Independent.

Amash had been the only Republican in Congress to call for impeachment proceedings against President Donald Trump. Several Republicans, angered by his Trump criticism, had launched campaigns to defeat him in the GOP primary.

Amash reported Monday he raised about $177,000 between April and June. Republican state Rep. Jim Lower raised about $184,000 between his mid-May launch and June 30.

The three-way race has made the western Michigan district a top opportunity for Democrats to gain a House seat in 2020.

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