At a Glance ...

Judge allows freedom for elderly man serving life sentence

DETROIT (AP) — A man in prison for nearly 60 years was eligible for immediate release Tuesday after a  judge reduced his sentence, the result of a major change in how Michigan treats 18-year-olds convicted of murder.

Ivory Thomas began serving a life sentence in 1965 for killing a young man in a Detroit park. He was 18 at the time of the fatal stabbing, according to the Wayne County prosecutor's office.

Thomas, now 77, was destined to die in prison as a result of that mandatory sentence. But the Michigan Supreme Court in 2022 said people who committed murder when they were 18 can't automatically be given a no-parole term.

Last month,, the state appeals court said the decision could be applied retroactively to more than 250 people currently in prison.

Thomas was resentenced to 60 years in prison by Judge Chandra Baker-Robinson, effectively time already served.

“Records support Mr. Thomas’ positive transformation while in prison," the prosecutor's office said. "He has accepted responsibility for his actions and serves as a mentor to other inmates. He currently is experiencing serious health challenges that have a daily impact.”

Webinar focuses on federal corporate law

Wayne State University Law School will present its Baiardi Endowed Law Speaker Series on Monday, Feb. 19, from 12:15 to 1:30 p.m. at Wayne Law’s Partrich Auditorium, 471 W. Palmer Ave. in Detroit.

Joan MacLeod Heminway, interim director of the Institute for Professional Leadership and Rick Rose Distinguished Professor of Law, will present “Visioning (Not Advocating or Discounting) Federal Corporate Law.”
To register for the free lecture, visit and scroll down to “events.”  For additional information, contact Michael Oswalt

‘State Habeas Corpus’ explore
in online training

The State Appellate Defender Office’s Criminal Defense Resource Center will kick off its first 2024 virtual lunchtime training with “State Habeas Corpus” on Tuesday, Feb. 20, from noon to 1:30 p.m. via Zoom.

Leading the training will be John Sims from the Calhoun County Public Defender Office on Habeas Corpus.

To register for the webinar, visit  

Anyone with questions may contact CDRC Manager Kathy Swedlow at

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