At a Glance

 State Supreme Court holds oral arguments

A long-time prisoner whose commutation request was first granted, then denied by former Gov. Jennifer Granholm will have his case heard this week by the Michigan Supreme Court. 

Matthew Makowski, who is serving a life sentence without parole for his role in the 1988 robbery and murder of a co-worker, sought to have his sentence modified so that he would be eligible for parole. Granholm first commuted his sentence, then, after the victim’s family protested, withdrew the commutation. Makowski’s constitutional challenge to Granholm’s actions has been dismissed by the trial court and Court of Appeals.

The high court also will hear a challenge by Wayne County Circuit Court Judge Wade H. McCree, who faces sanctions for having an extramarital affair with a woman who was a complainant in a case before him. 

McCree is challenging a recommendation by the Judicial Tenure Commission for his removal from office and suspension for six years.


Bar associations co-host holiday party

The Wolverine Bar Association and the D. Augustus Straker Bar Association will co-host their annual Holiday Party on Thursday evening, December 19, at Centaur, 2233 Park Ave. in Detroit — behind the Fox Theater. 
The event is scheduled from 5:30-8 p.m.

 Admission is $15 for law students, $25 for members and $35 for non-members. 

A portion of the proceeds will be donated to the memorial fund for Wayne State University Law School student Tiane Brown.  

To register, contact Jerome Crawford at

Lawyer for underwear bomber makes appeal

DETROIT (AP) — A federal appeals court has heard arguments in the case of a Nigerian man who tried to blow up a Detroit-bound jet on Christmas 2009.
An attorney for Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab says his guilty plea should be thrown out and a mental competency hearing ordered. Travis Rossman also argues that a life sentence for a young man is extreme, especially when no one except Abdulmutallab was seriously injured aboard Northwest Airlines Flight 253.

An appeals court in Cincinnati recently heard arguments on those issues and more. There was no immediate decision.
Abdulmutallab, now 26, pleaded guilty to trying to blow up the plane with a bomb sewn into his underwear. He told authorities that he trained in Yemen under a high-ranking member of al-Qaida.

State GOP official faces additional charges

ESCANABA (AP) — A Michigan Republican State Committee member facing charges in Wisconsin was recently jailed in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula on other charges.
The Detroit Free Press says Doug Sedenquist, 51, missed a court hearing in Green Bay, Wisconsin because he was in custody in Delta County. The Escanaba man was arrested on charges including extortion and using a computer to commit a crime.

In Wisconsin, he faces charges of disobeying police, sending a threat and disorderly conduct. 

Sedenquist also had been Delta County Republican vice chairman and has worked in talk radio.