State Seeks Reinstatement of Charges Against Former MSU President

Original Case Details

Michigan State University’s former President Lou Anna Simon was originally charged with four counts of lying to police. She was accused of lying to investigators about her knowledge about complaints involving former MSU sports medicine doctor Larry Nassar, who has since been convicted in multiple cases of sexually abusing hundreds of women. Eaton County District Court Judge Julie Reincke initially bound over Simon on the four charges, after finding that the prosecutor met their probable cause standard to continue the case to Circuit Court. The case was bound over to Eaton County Circuit Court Judge John Maurer, who upon review of the case, found that District Court Judge Reincke abused her discretion and ignored a lack of evidence in the case. Because of this finding, the case against Simon was then dismissed by Judge Maurer. The State of Michigan has appealed Maurer’s decision to dismiss to the Michigan Court of Appeals.

State of Michigan Appeals to Reinstate Charges

The State’s attorneys argue that Eaton County Circuit Court Judge John Maurer reviewed the case from an incorrect standard, reviewing the case from a fresh slate when he decided to overturn the ruling of the lower District Court judge. If the State’s attorneys are able to convince the Court of Appeals that this judge did so, then it would result in a reinstatement of the charges as the Circuit Court Judge is supposed to view the case with deference to the lower court and only overturn the ruling if he finds that the lower court abused their discretion. State’s attorneys further argue that Circuit Court Judge Maurer did not take into account that he did not see or hear the testimony firsthand. Also stating that the testimony from a preliminary examination that spanned seven days was not properly weighed in favor of the District Court’s Judge’s view. State’s attorneys believe that the strength of the case should “be judged by a community of Simon’s peers, sharing a room with witnesses and viewing the attorneys’ adversarial testing.” Defense attorneys have shown confidence that the Court of Appeals will uphold Judge Maurer’s decision, praising its thoroughness and detail.

What Happens Next?

The Michigan Court of Appeals will make a decision after reading briefs by both prosecution and defense and can further order oral arguments on the matter. The Court of Appeals has the power to reinstate the charges if it feels that the Circuit Court Judge went outside of his boundaries in deciding to dismiss the case. The Court of Appeals will hear this case in the form of a three-judge panel. This panel has the ability to ask questions of both the state’s attorney as well as Simon’s attorney in deciding what the proper path is forward. The three Court of Appeals judges will take a vote and whichever side carries at least a 2-1 majority will win the hearing and carry that decision forward. If the state’s attorneys are denied the reinstatement of the charges against Simon, then the state’s attorneys will only be left with an appeal to the Michigan Supreme Court. The Michigan Supreme Court would not be required to even hear the case as the Court decides which case it hears on a case by case basis. If the charges are reinstated against Simon, defense attorneys will have the same option in appealing to Michigan’s highest court.

Any Further Questions?

If you or a loved one has been charged with a crime or are being investigated for one, then it is important to speak to an experienced criminal defense attorney immediately. At Grabel & Associates, our attorneys have over 100 years of combined experience in successfully defending criminal cases all over the state of Michigan. This experience extends not only to adult cases, but also to juvenile charges. We are not a general practice firm. We are a team of criminal defense attorneys; it’s all we do. We offer a FREE consultation to anyone with questions relating to a possible or existing criminal charge against them or a loved one. Feel free to contact us on our 24/7 defense line at 1-800-342-7896. You can also contact us online or come visit us at one of our three statewide locations. We can also come to you.

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