Motions Denied As Hearing On Brennan Complaint Approaches
September 20, 2018
Several motions to limit evidence against accused Judge Theresa Brennan were put forward at a hearing Wednesday.
Retired Wayne County Circuit Judge William Giovan, who is serving as the Special Master in the complaint filed by the Judicial Tenure Commission, denied three motions while a deal with was made on the fourth. Brennan is accused of judicial misconduct, mostly connected to her relationship with a State Police detective who served as the key prosecution witness in a 2013 murder trial she presided over. She also was accused of using staff members for personal errands and to work on her political campaigns.
The first motion was to bar information about the relationship between Brennan and MSP Detective Sean Furlong before the trial of Jerome Kowalski. But the head of the JTC indicated they only planned to introduce evidence of the relationship during and after the trial, so a decision was not needed. The other motions also sought to either dismiss particular allegations or limit evidence, including telephone calls between Furlong and Brennan and the mention of prior complaints against Brennan. Judge Giovan ruled against all three.
The full hearing on the JTC complaint will begin October 1st in 16th District Court in Livonia. After hearing from both sides, Giovan will make a recommendation on the charges to the Michigan Supreme Court, which will have the final say on what happens to Brennan.
Meanwhile, a hearing is set Friday in Livingston County on a motion to disqualify an Eaton County judge from hearing a request by retired Circuit Court Judge Daniel Burress that a citizen’s grand jury investigate Brennan. (JK)