Daily Briefs . . .

Appeals court revives criminal case in Detroit-area jail mess


DETROIT (AP) — The Michigan appeals court says prosecutors should be given a second chance to pursue charges against a lawyer in a failed jail project in Wayne County.

A judge last year dismissed charges of misconduct and willful neglect of duty against Steven Collins, who works for the county. But the appeals court says prosecutors should be allowed to file additional details that could support the neglect charge.

The unfinished jail is an eyesore in Detroit, across from the county courthouse. Construction stopped three years ago because the project was wildly over budget.

Prosecutors say Collins knew about cost overruns but never informed county commissioners or others. His attorney says Collins' job description didn't include reporting to commissioners.

Former county chief financial officer Carla Sledge also is charged.

 

Snyder to appeal court ruling on withheld teacher wages
 

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Gov. Rick Snyder is expected to appeal a court's ruling that orders the return of $550 million withheld from Michigan teachers' paychecks for retiree health care.

Snyder spokeswoman Anna Heaton says Tuesday that the "payments are necessary for the long-term financial stability of the retirement system teachers rely on for health care benefits."

Public school employees had 3 percent of their pay deducted for about two years under a 2010 law. That law was declared unconstitutional and Snyder signed a new one in 2012 that's been upheld by the Michigan Supreme Court. The state appeals court ruled last month that initial salary deductions were improper.

State Attorney General Bill Schuette said Tuesday he will not provide Snyder counsel for an appeal, but will provide for a special assistant attorney general.

 

Macomb County  assistant prosecutor seeks U.S. House seat


CLARKSTON, Mich. (AP) — A Macomb County assistant prosecutor plans to seek a U.S. House seat for Michigan after former “Little House on the Prairie” star Melissa Gilbert dropped her run.

The Detroit News and Detroit Free Press report 29-year-old Suzanna Shkreli of Clarkston is being introduced as a replacement candidate for Gilbert, who was the only Democrat challenging Republican U.S. Rep. Mike Bishop in the 8th District.

Shkreli, who has prosecuted cases of physical and sexual abuse against children for the past six years, says she’s “not a career politician.” The 29-year-old says she’s “in the courtroom every day, trying to protect our children from dangerous predators.”

In May, Gilbert announced that health problems forced her out of the race. She played Laura Ingalls on “Little House” in the 1970s and 1980s.

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