Local lawmakers have officially introduced a resolution calling for the impeachment of embattled 53rd District Court Judge Theresa Brennan.

Republican State Representative Lana Theis of Brighton Township is the primary sponsor of the impeachment resolution introduced Wednesday, which has various co-sponsors including State Representative Hank Vaupel of Handy Township. He says while Judge Brennan’s caseload was removed and reassigned to a visiting judge a few months ago, she continues to collect a paycheck at the expense of taxpayers and they are committed to doing everything they can to hold her accountable.

Theis says the troubling pattern of improper conduct exhibited by Judge Brennan has resulted in her losing the trust and confidence of her colleagues and the public. She says if Brennan won’t resign, then it’s time for the House to move forward with the impeachment process. Theis tells WHMI it is beyond frustrating to know the people of Livingston County are having to pay for Brennan to sit and do nothing but that is still infinitely better than when she had her docket in front of her, adding everyone is in a better place now that she is not actually hearing cases.
Theis referenced a recent town hall meeting, saying they heard over and over again from people who have been personally harmed by how this judge chose to carry herself in the courtroom.

Theis tells WHMI it’s urgently necessary to get this corrected, adding she hopes the Michigan judicial Tenure Commission and Michigan State Police forward fast enough that this particular process isn’t necessary but in case they don’t, they have an option and she wanted to take it. She says it’s been 18 months and a lot of investigation can happen during that time, as well as a lot of evidence being reviewed and well vetted. Theis says from the information she has seen, it warrants removing Brennan from the bench by whatever process necessary.

House Resolution 399 was referred to the House Judiciary Committee for consideration. Theis noted the resolution can be amended prior to the vote, if more items are vetted and appropriate to include. If the resolution is approved by the House, an impeachment trial would occur in the Senate. If convicted, Brennan would then be removed from office.

Meanwhile, Brennan is also under investigation through the Michigan Judicial Tenure Commission in the wake of an affair with Michigan State Police Detective Sean Furlong, who was the chief prosecution witness in the 2013 double murder trial of Jerome Kowalski, which Brennan presided over. Kowalski is currently serving life in prison. (JM)