Daily Briefs

Flint whistleblowing officer wins appeal at Supreme Court

FLINT, Mich. (AP) — The Michigan Supreme Court has given new life to a lawsuit by a Flint police officer who says he was put on road patrol in a dangerous area because he criticized how tax dollars were spent.

The court reversed a decision by the state appeals court and sent Kevin Smith's case back to a Genesee County judge.

Smith was a full-time police union president until Flint's emergency manager eliminated the position in 2012. He says he later got in trouble when he criticized how Flint was spending a special property tax for public safety.

In an order Friday, the Supreme Court says Smith has sufficiently alleged discrimination under Michigan's whistleblower law on the basis of a job reassignment during undesirable hours at an undesirable location.


Last chance for jurors who failed to appear

The Third Circuit Court is offering jurors who failed to appear in 2016 one last chance to rectify that situation before Chief Judge Colombo issues an order to show cause for failing to appear for jury duty.

In 2016, the Court required 101,523 jurors to appear for jury service, and 22,255 jurors failed to report.  During the month of February, these jurors may contact the Jury Services Department at (313) 224-5254 or (313) 224-5650 to schedule a new date to appear and avoid the risk of receiving a show cause order and being fined or jailed.

“Jury service is the purest form of government because jurors are not subject to political considerations or contributions, but rather decide the case based upon the evidence,” said Judge Colombo. “Jurors represent the thinking of the community. It is a service that should command the pride and pleasure of every citizen and should not be avoided.”

Jurors who have failed to appear should call the Court today and request to participate in the Last Chance Jury Service Process.


Court considers  suspension for judge who harassed woman

ADRIAN, Mich. (AP) — The Michigan Supreme Court wants more information as it considers whether to suspend a judge for 60 days for sexually harassing a female employee.

Lenawee County Probate Judge Gregg Iddings’ treatment of the woman led to her resignation and a financial settlement with the county. There’s no dispute that he made comments suggesting they should have an affair.

Iddings showed her a sexually suggestive YouTube video and said her work outfits were “too sexy.” In a letter of recommendation, the judge said she was a good worker and “sexy as hell.” That passage was deleted.

A watchdog agency, the Michigan Judicial Tenure Commission, is recommending a 60-day suspension. Iddings says he’s remorseful.

In an order Friday, the Supreme Court says it wants reports from the county’s investigation and a psychologist who assessed the judge.

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