Brennan Arraigned, Released On Bond
December 18, 2018
53rd District Court Judge Theresa Brennan was arraigned this morning on a trio of felony charges including perjury and destruction of evidence.
Judge G. David Guinn of Genesee County’s 67th District Court oversaw the arraignment via a videophone and set a $30,000 personal recognizance bond. Brennan's defense attorney revealed to Judge Guinn that she had already surrendered her passport. A probable cause conference was set for January 16th. The Michigan Attorney General’s Office authorized the charges last week against Brennan, which stemmed from testimony that arose during a proceeding held by the Michigan Judicial Tenure commission in October alleging Brennan gave false testimony regarding the data on her cell phone that had been ordered preserved during her divorce proceedings. It is further alleged Brennan failed to recuse herself immediately from her own divorce case and used the delay to dispose erase the data from her phone. If convicted on the perjury charge, she faces up to 15 years in prison.
In the meantime, Brennan is also awaiting the of a JTC investigation that accuses her of unethical acts and could lead to her removal from the bench. The JTC says that Brennan used staff to perform personal services and failed to disclose a relationship with former State Police Detective Sean Furlong, who was the chief prosecution witness of the 2013 double murder trial of Jerome Kowalski, over which Brennan presided. Brennan and Furlong claim the affair started after the trial, but testimony during her divorce proceedings and other evidence that has come to light suggest otherwise.
Kowalski's son, Jared, has been following Brennan closely through the year's proceedings. He said that while this allegation against Brennan doesn’t directly affect his father’s case, it ultimately shows her character and how she’s acted inappropriately in not just his father’s case, but other cases as well. Jared said today’s proceedings were “a good start” and is continuing to call upon Livingston County Prosecutor Bill Vailliencourt to “do the right thing” grant his father a retrial.
State Senator Joe Hune was at the arraignment and called the Brennan case a “travesty.” An impeachment resolution has been introduced in the Michigan House of Representatives, and asked the State Senate to investigate. In the meantime, Hune says Brennan is collecting $600 a day from local residents and “needs to go.”