Week after lawsuit, Michigan court justice accused of fraud makes public appearance
Diane Hathaway, husband accused of hiding property but not charged with any crime
Embattled Michigan Supreme Court Justice Diane Hathaway has made her first appearance on the bench since the U.S. Attorney accused her of fraud.
The civil complaint alleges she and her husband concealed assets from a bank, in order to qualify for a short sale of their home in Grosse Pointe Park.
Hathaway said nothing during the routine hearing on court rules. She declined Local 4’s request for an interview.
The man who filed a complaint against her with the Judicial Tenure Commission is urging the legislature to vote to remove her.
Dan Pero says the resolution would have to pass by a two-thirds vote, and then be sent on to the Governor.
"What she did was an incredible fraud on the people of this state,” said Pero, who once served as Governor Engler’s Chief of Staff. "Step down. Do the right thing. If she wants to fight the charges, fight them separately. She should not do that sitting in judgment of other people’s lives,” he said.
No one in the legislature appears ready to take that step, though the filing of the federal complaint has heightened lawmakers concerns about Hathaway continuing in her job.
Governor Snyder’s Press Secretary Sara Wurfel says the Governor takes seriously the separation of the Executive and Judicial branches.
“Right now, the Governor and our office do not play a role in this matter and investigation,” she said. “We must let the justice and law enforcement systems take their course. The Governor is monitoring developments closely and will be prepared to act if necessary and at the proper time."
Hathaway has told her colleagues she is not resigning. Her lawyer vows to fight the government’s attempt to seize one of her homes.
Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.