Leaked SCOTUS opinion: A look at the future of abortion in Michigan if Roe is overturned
The right to abortions has been widely debated among Americans and lawmakers alike in recent years -- a debate that has nearly reached a boiling point today, given that the U.S. Supreme Court is expected to decide this summer whether to overturn a landmark 1973 abortion ruling.
Deep dive: What future of abortion in Michigan looks like if Roe is overturned
The right to abortions has been widely debated among Americans and lawmakers alike in recent years -- a debate that has nearly reached a boiling point today, given a new Texas law that could potentially impact national abortion regulations.
Those opposed to the decriminalization of sex work in Washtenaw County voice concerns
WASHTENAW COUNTY, Mich. – The Washtenaw County Prosecutor’s Office will no longer pursue charges against those who work consensually in the sex industry. They said that when sex work is legal, sex trafficking tended to increase and not decrease. Indeed the criminalization of sex work actually increases the risk of sex work adjacent harm. Accordingly, the Washtenaw County Prosecutor’s Office will henceforth decline to bring charges related to consensual sex work per se. READ: Human trafficking survivor takes fight for change to LansingChrissy Hemphill is an advocate for human trafficking survivors.
Washtenaw County Board of Commissioners create new positions for Sheriff’s Office, Prosecutor’s Office
WASHTENAW COUNTY, Mich. – Washtenaw County is looking to fill three new positions in the Washtenaw County Sheriff’s Office and Washtenaw County Prosecutor’s Office. “As a Board, we are committed to supporting efforts to increase the fairness and effectiveness of the criminal justice system in Washtenaw County,” said Sue Shink, Chair of the Board of Commissioners and Commissioner for District 2, in a release. “The Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion will build on the racial equity work already being done by the county,” said Washtenaw County Sheriff Jerry Clayton in a release. Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion / Deflection ProsecutorWithin the Washtenaw County Prosecutor’s Office, this role will oversee all cases that have been diverted through the LEADD program, track program participant progress and ensure participant needs are addressed. Program CoordinatorWorking in the Washtenaw County Sheriff’s Office, the program coordinator is responsible for daily operations of the LEADD program, including coordinating with community partners to design, implement, and sustain program activities.
Inside a COVID testing lab; U-M students asked to stay home; Four Directions owners to retire
John Prine leads the finale of the 41st Ann Arbor Folk Festival in 2018. Before we take a deep dive into this past week’s news, the 44th Ann Arbor Folk Festival kicks off tonight. (A4)Ad🧪️ Ann Arbor startup LynxDx is currently the second leading COVID testing lab in Michigan. (Washington Post)AdGood to know:🍲 Pop-up restaurants are on the rise in Ann Arbor as eateries think of creative ways to keep revenue flowing. Ad🦠 COVID WATCH: For daily COVID-19 news and analysis in Michigan, sign up for ClickOnDetroit’s Morning Report newsletter.
‘We are really focused on equity’: New Washtenaw County prosecutor makes sweeping changes
WASHTENAW COUNTY, Mich. – The new Washtenaw County prosecutor, Eli Savit, weighed in on what drove him to run for that position and what has inspired him to drive so much change. “We are really focused on equity in our justice system,” Savit said. READ: Washtenaw County Prosecutor Eli Savit scraps cash bailThree days into his term, he scrapped cash bail. READ: Washtenaw County prosecutor announces office will no longer pursue charges for consensual sex workOn Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Savit announced a new policy to combat racial profiling in Washtenaw County. READ: Washtenaw County Prosecutor’s Office announces new policy to fight racial profilingSavit said he wants Washtenaw County to serve as an example for the rest of the state.
‘Our justice system needs to treat kids like kids:’ Washtenaw County Prosecutor won’t charge juveniles accused of minor crimes
ANN ARBOR, Mich. – The juvenile justice system is no longer Washtenaw County’s go-to option when children and teens are accused of minor crimes. Since his term started, Savit has introduced sweeping policy changes to the county’s justice system, including rescinding the county’s no-tolerance policies, scrapping cash bail and combatting racial profiling. “All of this gives rise to a simple conclusion: Our justice system needs to treat kids like kids. Fights involving injuries and/or weapons on or off school property will be dealt with at the discretion of the prosecutor’s office. Petitions can be authorized by APAs if a continued threat to the safety of others is indicated or if the case is “more severe than typical school-related misbehavior.”Find the full policy directive here.
Washtenaw County Prosecutor Eli Savit talks vision, policy change in first weeks in office
ANN ARBOR – Washtenaw County Prosecutor Eli Savit has made his mark in his first 21 days in office. “I am a believer in the justice system based on what you did and not who you are,” said Savit. Three days later, Savit put Washtenaw County on the map by making it the first county in Michigan to scrap cash bail. Kids aren’t just mini adults and we shouldn’t be trapping them in the criminal legal system for adolescent or childhood mistakes. For instance, he said he’d rather see people deal with drug use through the health system rather than the legal system.
Racial profiling focus of 2021 Washtenaw Reads book
ANN ARBOR – The Washtenaw Reads program is an initiative by local public libraries to encourage reading and civic dialogue. One book is selected each year and participating libraries include Ann Arbor, Chelsea, Dexter, Milan, Salem-South Lyon, Saline and Ypsilanti. This year’s Washtenaw Read is “All American Boys” by Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely. For more information about the book, to see the authors’ websites and to discover related titles for people of all ages, click here. According to the Ann Arbor District Library’s website, Washtenaw Reads books should meet the following criteria:
Washtenaw County Prosecutor’s Office announces new policy to fight racial profiling
ANN ARBOR – The Washtenaw County Prosecutor’s Office announced today a new policy aimed at combatting racial profiling. The policy directive is only applicable to “consent searches” after routine ordinance or traffic stops. “We are sending a message that we are not interested in pursuing contraband charges that stem from racial profiling. Our Policy Regarding Pretext Stops is another proactive step towards creating a criminal justice system that works for all of us. None of us are free, until we are all free.”To read the full policy directive, click here.
AAPS explores reopening schools; U-M pauses 2nd vaccine phase; Harbaugh here to stay
Ann Arbor Public Schools made a major announcement this week: The district aims to return to hybrid in-person learning sometime in early March. While this is a lot to take in, parents should know that virtual learning will still be an option once in-person learning returns. (MLive)🎙 These city of Ann Arbor offices will be closed on Monday in observance of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. (A4)🎻 UMS has canceled all of its in-person performances through the end of April due to the ongoing pandemic. All About Ann Arbor is powered by ClickOnDetroit/WDIV.
Washtenaw County prosecutor announces office will no longer pursue charges for consensual sex work
WASHTENAW COUNTY, Mich. – The Washtenaw County Prosecutor’s Office will no longer pursue charges against those who work consensually in the sex industry. “We are focused on crime that really harms the community,” said Washtenaw County prosecutor Eli Savit. Charges will not be filed against consensual sex workers, officials said. The prosecutor will still work cases against human traffickers and those who may be holding people against their will. READ: Washtenaw County Prosecutor no longer pursuing charges for consensual sex work
Washtenaw County Prosecutor no longer pursuing charges for consensual sex work
ANN ARBOR – Washtenaw County Prosecutor Eli Savit announced Thursday that his office will no longer press criminal charges in consensual sex work cases. Savit said that his office will continue to “vigorously pursue” sex work crimes, including sexual and physical assault, human trafficking and crimes involving children. “The criminalization of sex work actually increases the risk of sex work-adjacent harm,” reads the 8-page policy directive issued to Assistant Prosecuting Attorneys. Furthermore, research papers in the world’s leading independent medical journal, The Lancet, conclude that decriminalizing sex work can reduce new HIV infections. “Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, and the American Civil Liberties Union have all called for the decriminalization of sex work,” reads the directive.
Washtenaw County prosecutor no longer pursuing charges in marijuana, entheogenic plant cases
WASHTENAW COUNTY, Mich. – It was recently announced that Washtenaw County will no longer pursue charges related to marijuana and entheogenic plants. Read: Washtenaw County Prosecutor: No more charges in cannabis, psychedelic plant casesThis means indictments such as possession and distribution related to marijuana or shrooms will all be off the table from a legal standpoint. They can focus on the people who are doing real crime in the community, then it’s definitely worth it,” said a Washtenaw County woman who also chose not to be identified. We should no longer continue to perpetuate the cruel roulette wheel that imposes criminal consequences only on an unlucky few,” said Savit. Criminal charges can still be filed against large-scale operations that are distributing controlled substances if the health of the public is at risk.
Washtenaw County Prosecutor: No more charges in cannabis, psychedelic plant cases
Marijuana plants are pictured at the Baker's marijuana nursery at Baker Medical Wednesday, Feb. 26, 2020, in Oklahoma City. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)ANN ARBOR – Washtenaw County Prosecutor Eli Savit announced Tuesday that his office will no longer bring charges in cases related to marijuana or entheogenic plant use, possession or small-scale distribution. Today, I’m pleased to announce that we'll no longer be charging cases related to marijuana or entheogenic plants (naturally occurring psychedelics). If Washtenaw County’s largest city’s resolution decriminalized the use, growth and possession of psychedelic plants, the Prosecutor’s Office sees no point in bringing charges forward elsewhere in the county. For that reason, we will no longer be contesting expungement for marijuana or entheogenic-related offenses.”See the full policy directives for cannabis and marijuana and entheogenic plants.
COVID-19 vaccines at the Big House; Washtenaw County Prosecutor fulfills promises; Jeff Daniels to MC Folk Fest
But here in Ann Arbor and in greater Washtenaw County, some major stories developed as well. Meanwhile, Washtenaw County Prosecutor Eli Savit made several policy changes in his first week in office, including scrapping cash bail. Washtenaw County is the first jurisdiction in the state to eliminate cash bail. (MLive)🎤 Jeff Daniels will emcee the virtual 44th Ann Arbor Folk Festival on Jan. 29 and 30. (MLive)Good to know:🖌 Here’s a great socially distant activity: Explore these downtown murals commissioned by the Ann Arbor Art Center -- map included.
Washtenaw County Prosecutor Eli Savit launches transparency project with U-M, ACLU
ANN ARBOR – Washtenaw County Prosecutor Eli Savit announced Tuesday the launch of the “Prosecutor Transparency Project” in partnership with University of Michigan’s Law School and the ACLU of Michigan. The project, which begins immediately, aims to uncover possible racial inequities by analyzing data surrounding decision-making by the prosecutor’s office. “We know systemic racism exists in all facets of society, and the Prosecutor’s Office is no exception. Finally, in consultation with researchers, the Prosecutor’s Office will identify metrics to track to ensure equitable treatment. He has spent years compiling and analyzing data from Michigan’s criminal justice system, was the data consultant for the CREW report and has served as Data Administrator for Michigan’s Criminal Justice Policy Commission.
Local 4 News at 5 -- Jan. 4, 2021
Here’s what you missed on Local 4 News at 5:Washtenaw County prosecutor to eliminate use of cash bail in any caseWashtenaw County Prosecutor Eli Savit announced Monday that the Prosecutor’s Office will eliminate the use of cash bail in any case. Savit, who took office on Jan. 1, alerted staff Monday morning in a 20-page policy directive. According to the directive, cash bail “is a system under which a defendant who has been accused of a crime is required to post money in order to secure release from jail pending trial.”
Washtenaw County Prosecutor Eli Savit scraps cash bail
ANN ARBOR – Washtenaw County Prosecutor Eli Savit announced Monday that the Prosecutor’s Office will eliminate the use of cash bail in any case. Savit, who took office on Jan. 1, alerted staff Monday morning in a 20-page policy directive. The move has made Washtenaw County the first jurisdiction in the state to eliminate cash bail. Washington, D.C. and New Jersey have stopped seeking cash bail, as well as the city of San Francisco and counties in Vermont and Virginia. According to the directive, cash bail places poorer people at risk of losing their jobs, homes and can place serious harm on children of defendants.
Washtenaw County Prosecutor Eli Savit rescinds ‘zero-tolerance’ policies
WASHTENAW COUNTY, Mich. – Washtenaw County Prosecutor Eli Savit announced that he is rescinding “zero-tolerance” policies that were previously used by the prosecutor’s office. The policies prevented certain defendants from going through substance-use treatment or rehabilitation options in lieu of incarceration. A one-sized-fits-all approach to justice—divorced from the factual circumstances of each unique case—is not justice at all. I said repeatedly during my campaign that my first act as Prosecutor would be to eliminate ‘zero-tolerance policies,’ and we’ve done that today. Everyone involved in the justice system—crime survivors, defendants, witnesses, and families—deserves to have their unique case treated with the care that it deserves.
Washtenaw County public invited to community forum to discuss racial disparaties
ANN ARBOR, Mich. – On Saturday, Oct. 17, a forum will take place at South Lillie Park addressing disparities among the Black community in Washtenaw County. At the “Getting Real About Race” community forum, activists and public officials will discuss issues in five different areas including education, housing, healthcare, employment and the criminal justice system. The forum is scheduled to take place from 2-6 p.m. Anticipated speakers include U.S. Rep. Debbie Dingell, Ann Arbor Mayor Christopher Taylor, Ypsilanti Mayor Lori Richardson, Washtenaw County Prosecutor-Elect Eli Savit and Dr. Abdul El-Sayed, among many others according to the event page. South Lillie Park is at 4365 Platt Rd, Ann Arbor.