Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Deputy Rick Bennett - Genesee SD

DEPUTY RICHARD [RICK] BENNETT [GENESEE COUNTY SD] KILLED IN HIGH-SPEED POLICE CHASE AFTER DOMESTIC DISPUTE WITH EX-WIFE. 09/30/09




















Off-duty deputy killed in chase
Speeds exceeded 100 mph at times

WJRT TV NEWS
Thursday, October 01, 2009 5:18 PM
By Angela Brown
http://abclocal.go.com/wjrt/story?section=news/local&id=7042712

MID-MICHIGAN (WJRT) -- (10/01/09) -- An off-duty Genesee County Sheriff's deputy was killed after leading officers on a high speed chase Wednesday night.Genesee County Sheriff Robert Pickell says, as a deputy, Rick Bennett had a stellar record and was liked by the people in the department.

But, Pickell says, Bennett was having personal problems. He says Bennett was going through a divorce, and was having problems dealing with it.

Last night, according to Pickell, Bennett was at his wife's home. The sheriff says he damaged her car in some way.
Police were called, and Bennett reportedly took off on M 13.

At some point, he was stopped. Sheriff Pickell says Bennett backed up, hit a police cruiser, and took off again.

Bennett led the chase to Grand Blanc Road, driving over 100 miles per hour with up to five law enforcement agencies chasing him. He eventually drove to U.S. 23 where his pickup truck rolled six times, throwing Bennett out.

He was taken a hospital where he was pronounced dead at 11:59 p.m. Wednesday.

The sheriff says Bennett worked in the traffic department, and was just promoted to sergeant last year.

Bennett was 34 years old.
















Genesee County Sheriff's sergeant killed in off-duty crash after leading police on 100 mph chase
MLive
By Bryn Mickle Flint Journal
October 01, 2009, 10:29AM
http://www.mlive.com/news/flint/index.ssf/2009/10/genesee_county_sheriffs_sergea.html

GENESEE COUNTY, Michigan -- An off-duty Genesee County Sheriff's sergeant died late Wednesday after he lost control of his pickup while leading police on a chase that reached speeds of 100 mph.

The chase began in Durand after Sgt. Rick Bennett backed into a police car that had apparently stopped him for questioning about a complaint of smashed windows at his estranged wife's home, said Genesee County Sheriff Robert J. Pickell.

Bennett, 34, drove off after hitting the police car on Lansing Road about 10:30 p.m. and led police on a chase that ended when he rolled his pickup while trying to exit southbound U.S. 23 at North Road.

The 2002 GMC pickup rolled six times, throwing Bennett from the vehicle. He was pronounced dead at Genesys Regional Medical Center just before midnight.

Officers from five police agencies were involved with the chase that continued from M-13 to Grand Blanc Road before ending on U.S. 23.

"Thank God no innocent people were hurt," said Pickell.

Pickell said the incident was completely out of character for Bennett, who had two children and had been going through a divorce.

"You could tell that it was very painful for him," said Pickell.

Pickell referred specific questions on the Durand incident to Durand police, who could not be reached for comment Thursday morning.

Bennett, the grandson of former Flint mayor Don Williamson, had been with the sheriff's department for about 11 years.

He had been on traffic duty and was a member of the department honor guard. He had no history of any disciplinary action, said Pickell.

"It's troubling to me because I know what kind of person he was on duty," said Pickell.

"It's a tragic ending to a sad story," said Pickell.











Actions called out of character for Genesee County Sheriff's sergeant killed in off-duty crash
By Laura Angus
Flint Journal
October 01, 2009, 1:01PM
http://www.mlive.com/news/flint/index.ssf/2009/10/actions_called_out_of_characte.html

GENESEE COUNTY, Michigan — Speaking for former Flint mayor Don Williamson, Joe Wilson said the former mayor's grandson, Genesee County Sheriff's Sgt. Rick Bennett, was a good officer who was respectful of everyone, and called Bennett's actions out of character.

Bennett died late Wednesday after he lost control of his pickup while leading police on a chase that reached speeds of 100 mph.

The chase began in Durand after Bennett, who was off-duty, backed into a police car that had apparently stopped him for questioning about a complaint of smashed windows at his estranged wife's home, said Genesee County Sheriff Robert J. Pickell.

Bennett, 34, drove off after hitting the police car on Lansing Road about 10:30 p.m. and led police on a chase that ended when he rolled his pickup while trying to exit southbound U.S. 23 at North Road.

“He loved his family, loved the job,” said Wilson.

He declined to comment further until the family gets more information from police about the inciden. He said Williamson is in seclusion with the rest of the family, and expressed condolences to all members of Bennett’s family.




















Off-Duty Sergeant Killed After Leading Police On High-Speed Chase
Police Say Domestic Dispute Escalated Into Chase
WNEM- CHANNEL 5 NEWS
POSTED: 12:15 pm EDT October 1, 2009
UPDATED: 7:06 pm EDT October 1, 2009
http://www.wnem.com/news/21171532/detail.html#

GENESEE COUNTY, Mich. -- Genesee County authorities have confirmed the death of an off-duty sheriff’s sergeant.

The situation started at a Durand apartment complex where Bennett’s wife Leslie lived with their two sons.

The couple was eight months into divorce proceedings and a no-contact order had been issued between them.

Police said the situation degraded when officers started questioning Bennett for allegedly slashing Leslie’s tires and busting out the vehicle’s windows.

Bennett then fled the complex, hit a police car on Lansing Road and the chase began.

Leading police from Shiawassee County, police said he hit speeds of up to 100 mph.

Officers from five police departments were in hot pursuit and chased him into Genesee County.

While exiting U.S.23 at North Road, Bennett’s pickup rolled over six times.

Officers tried to give Bennett CPR but he did not survive.

The bumper and first aid materials are still visible next to the road.

The impact and spinning forces knocked Bennett out of his shoes and parts of his 2002 GMC still litter a grassy area off the exit ramp.

Bennett had been with the sheriff's office for about 11 years and was the grandson of former Flint Mayor Don Williamson.

Pickell said the incident was out of character for Bennett.

Stay with WNEM.com and TV5 as more information becomes available.












Off-duty deputy killed in high-speed chase
Richard Bennett was going through a divorce
NBC25- Mid Michigan
By Dan Armstrong
Thursday, October 01, 2009 at 10:57 a.m.
http://www.connectmidmichigan.com/news/story.aspx?id=357355

SHIAWASEE COUNTY -- An off-duty Mid-Michigan sheriff's deputy has been killed in a high-speed chase.

Richard Bennett, 34, worked for the Genesee County Sheriff's Department.

Officials say Bennett was going through a divorce and there was some kind of domestic dispute Wednesday night at an apartment complex in Shiawassee County.

When police arrived, Bennett had already left.

Bennett led at least four police agencies on a high-speed chase of more than 100 miles per hour.

Bennett's truck flipped six times, ejecting him at the North Road exit of US 23. He died at Genesys Regional Medical Center.

Genesee County Sheriff Robert Pickell says Bennett was an exemplary employee, well-liked and that this action did not reflect the kind of deputy he was.















Off-Duty Officer Dies After Police Chase
WWJ Radio-Detroit
Posted: Thursday, 01 October 2009 2:42PM
http://www.wwj.com/Off-Duty-Officer-Dies-After-Police-Chase/5344023

Police say an off-duty Genesee County Sheriff's sergeant has been killed after leading police on a chase that reached speeds of 100 miles an hour.

Genesee County Sheriff Robert Pickell tells The Flint Journal that 34-year-old Sgt. Rick Bennett died late Wednesday when he was ejected from his pickup truck after rolling over while trying to exit southbound U.S. 23.

Pickell says police were investigating a report of smashed windows at Bennett's estranged wife's home. When officers in Durand stopped him for questioning, Bennett backed into a police car before driving away.

Bennett had been with the sheriff's office for about 11 years and was the grandson of former Flint Mayor Don Williamson.Pickell said the incident was out of character for Bennett.


Michigan Officer Involved Domestic Violence

Deputy Rick Bennett - Genesee SD




On September 30, 2009, Genesee County Sheriff Deputy Rick Bennett violated a protective order his ex-wife had against him. Deputy Bennett went to his ex-wife's residence and apparently caused damage to her vehicle. When police questioned Bennett about allegedly slashing his ex's  tires and busting out the vehicle’s windows, Bennett took off in his vehicle. He led the police officers on a high-speed chase, which ended when Bennett lost control of his vehicle. Bennett was killed in the car accident.




Officer Rick Bennett dies after police chase following domestic with ex-wife







Off-Duty Sergeant Killed After Leading Police On High-Speed Chase

Police Say Domestic Dispute Escalated Into Chase
WNEM- CHANNEL 5 NEWS
POSTED: 12:15 pm EDT October 1, 2009
UPDATED: 7:06 pm EDT October 1, 2009
http://www.wnem.com/news/21171532/detail.html#

GENESEE COUNTY, Mich. -- Genesee County authorities have confirmed the death of an off-duty sheriff’s sergeant.

The situation started at a Durand apartment complex where Bennett’s wife Leslie lived with their two sons.

The couple was eight months into divorce proceedings and a no-contact order had been issued between them.

Police said the situation degraded when officers started questioning Bennett for allegedly slashing Leslie’s tires and busting out the vehicle’s windows.

Bennett then fled the complex, hit a police car on Lansing Road and the chase began.

Leading police from Shiawassee County, police said he hit speeds of up to 100 mph.

Officers from five police departments were in hot pursuit and chased him into Genesee County.

While exiting U.S.23 at North Road, Bennett’s pickup rolled over six times.

Officers tried to give Bennett CPR but he did not survive.

The bumper and first aid materials are still visible next to the road.

The impact and spinning forces knocked Bennett out of his shoes and parts of his 2002 GMC still litter a grassy area off the exit ramp.

Bennett had been with the sheriff's office for about 11 years and was the grandson of former Flint Mayor Don Williamson.

Pickell said the incident was out of character for Bennett.

Stay with WNEM.com and TV5 as more information becomes available.







Thursday, September 24, 2009

LaDonna Glenn - Aware DV Program Coordinator - Jackson



LaDonna Glenn, AWARE domestic violence agency program director charged and convicted for felonious assault against her husband with a hammer.







September 24, 2009: LaDonna Glenn, Domestic violence program coordinator for AWARE Inc. [Jackson, MI]  was arrested and charged with  felonious assault after she assaulted her husband with a hammer. Glenn retained her position working with domestic violence victims at AWARE until her court trial in May 2010.


May 18, 2010: A jury found Glenn guilty of felonious assault for her September 2009 attack on her husband.



June 21, 2010:  Glenn was sentenced to one year probation; ordered to participate in domestic violence and anger programs; ordered to abstain from assaultive or threatening behavior and not use or possess any deadly weapon.













AWARE Inc. employee and a former employee file discrimination charges against shelter
Published: Wednesday, October 13, 2010, 1:47 PM
Updated: Thursday, October 14, 2010, 8:58 AM
By Danielle Salisbury
Danielle_Salisbury@mlive.com
The Jackson Citizen Patriot
http://www.mlive.com/news/jackson/index.ssf/2010/10/aware_inc_employee_and_a_forme.html

One AWARE Inc. employee and a former employee have filed discrimination charges against the domestic violence shelter with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in Detroit.

Former family advocate, Danielle Johnson, who was fired in March, and Frances Keane, who worked as shelter manager until she went on stress leave in June, allege the past domestic violence program coordinator made sexual or derogatory remarks to them. Keane, who is Irish, additionally claims she was mocked for her accent.

Because they complained about these issues, they were demoted, disciplined or fired in retaliation, the women say.

AWARE denies the charges and is fully participating in the EEOC investigation, said Executive Director Rebecca Filip, who could not talk about the specific employee and former employee involved. “There was no discrimination.”

She said she is confident the process will exonerate AWARE, which provides services to victims of domestic or sexual violence.

Both women, hired by AWARE in 2006, filed their complaints on Sept. 15.

It takes months for the EEOC to investigate a charge, which any worker can file, according to information posted on the agency Web site.

If the agency finds a violation of the law, the office will try to reach a voluntary settlement with the employer. If a settlement is not possible, the office legal staff will decide whether the agency should file a lawsuit. The EEOC also may dismiss a charge without investigation if it appears to have little chance of success, according to the agency.

Keane, 47, said the coordinator, LaDonna Glenn, who no longer works for AWARE, would make fun of the way Keane speaks and talk about her physical appearance.

Johnson, who was fired in March for insubordination, said Glenn made comments about her breasts and butt. “I have asked her to stop to no avail,” Johnson wrote.

Keane said the stress of her job and the hostility of the environment forced her to stop working. Her hair fell out and she lost weight, she said. She is seeing a doctor and has filed for workers compensation, she said.

In a typed notice signed by Filip, Keane was accused of taking a confidential document or documents wrongfully away from the AWARE premise. She also did not ensure her staff got the training they needed, according to another document, provided to the Citizen Patriot by Keane. Keane said she did not start getting such letters until she made complaints.

Glenn lost her job as domestic violence program coordinator in May after she was convicted of felonious assault in Oakland County. She was accused of threatening her husband with a hammer.

                         












Oakland County judge sentences former domestic violence program coordinator at AWARE to probation for assaulting husband
By Danielle Salisbury
Danielle_Salisbury@mlive.com
The Jackson Citizen Patriot
June 21, 2010 at 9:23 PM
Updated June 22, 2010 at 10:53 AM
http://www.mlive.com/news/jackson/index.ssf/2010/06/oakland_county_judge_sentences.html

An Oakland County judge sentenced the former domestic violence program coordinator at AWARE Inc. in Jackson on Monday to a year probation for assaulting her husband.

As part of the court order, LaDonna Glenn has to participate in domestic violence and anger management programs, abstain from assaultive or threatening behavior and not use or possess any deadly weapon, according to online Oakland County court records.

A jury convicted Glenn, 47, in May of felonious assault, resulting in her losing her job at AWARE, a shelter and service provider to victims of sexual assault and domestic violence. Circuit Judge Martha Anderson sentenced her Monday afternoon.

She was accused of going to her and her husband’s condominium in Southfield in September, beating on the door with a hammer and twice raising the tool at her husband, George Glenn, whom she alleged was unfaithful.

Court records indicate she also had or has an address in Blackman Township.

In Jackson, she spoke publicly about domestic violence issues and participated in efforts to prevent it or educate others about its effects.

                       










Boyfriend of AWARE Inc. employee arrested with girlfriend on drug charges sentenced to three to 40 years in prison
By Aaron Aupperlee
aaupperl@mlive.com
The Jackson Citizen Patriot
on May 24, 2010 at 8:13 PM
Updated July 25, 2010 at 9:11 PM
http://www.mlive.com/news/jackson/index.ssf/2010/05/boyfriend_of_aware_inc_employe.html

The boyfriend of an AWARE Inc. employee arrested with his girlfriend on drug charges was sentenced last week.

Circuit Judge John McBain gave Rama Tyson, 34, three to 40 years in prison Thursday, according to court documents. He pleaded guilty April 2 to possession with the intent to deliver less than 50 grams of heroin.

Blackman Township Public Safety officers arrested Rama and his girlfriend, Sade Gant, 24, after searching their home Oct. 8 and finding marijuana and a quarter of an ounce of heroin.

Gant, originally charged with a felony, pleaded no contest to a misdemeanor charge of maintaining a drug house. She is scheduled for sentencing June 17.

AWARE board President Bree Thurlby said the board or agency will wait until Gant’s case concludes to take possible action. Gant is a client advocate at the shelter.

Last week, AWARE fired its domestic violence program coordinator, LaDonna Glenn, 46, after an Oakland County jury found her guilty of assaulting her husband.

Gant’s lawyer, Vincent Green, has said he expects she will be sentenced under a law that allows a person with no prior criminal record who successfully completes a term of probation to be spared a conviction.












LaDonna Glenn fired from her position as a domestic violence program coordinator at AWARE after being convicted of felonious assault
By Aaron Aupperlee
aaupperl@mlive.com
The Jackson Citizen Patriot
May 20, 2010 at 1:46 PM
Updated May 21, 2010 at 9:27 AM
http://www.mlive.com/news/jackson/index.ssf/2010/05/ladonna_glenn_fired_from_her_p.html

LaDonna Glenn, who was convicted Tuesday of felonious assault, was fired from her job as the domestic violence coordinator at AWARE Inc., said Rebecca Filip, executive director of AWARE.

Glenn had been told she needed to resign by 5 p.m. Wednesday or she would be fired. Filip did not make any further comments about Glenn or the organization.

On Tuesday, a jury in Oakland County Circuit Court found Glenn, 46, guilty of assaulting her husband, George Glenn, 69, with a hammer.

She was accused of going to their condominium in Southfield on Sept. 24, beating on the door with the hammer and twice raising the tool at her husband, whom she alleged was unfaithful.


                         












Conviction of felonious assault will cost domestic violence program coordinator her job at AWARE Inc.
By Danielle Salisbury
Danielle_Salisbury@mlive.com
The Jackson Citizen Patriot
May 20, 2010 at 12:09 AM
Updated May 20, 2010 at 1:58 PM

UPDATE: LaDonna Glenn fired from her position as a domestic violence program coordinator at AWARE after being convicted of felonious assault.

Convicted Tuesday of felonious assault, the AWARE Inc. domestic violence program coordinator was to resign by 5 p.m. Wednesday.

If LaDonna Glenn did not give up her position at the Jackson agency, she was to be terminated today, AWARE board President Bree Thurlby said.

As of late Wednesday afternoon, Glenn had not resigned, said Rebecca Filip, executive director of AWARE, which provides services such as counseling and emergency shelter to victims of domestic or sexual violence.


Filip said she would not be able to say until today whether Glenn quit her job.

On Tuesday, a jury in Oakland County Circuit Court found Glenn, 46, guilty of assaulting her husband, George Glenn, 69, with a hammer.

She was accused of going to their condominium in Southfield on Sept. 24, beating on the door with the hammer and twice raising the tool at her husband, whom she alleged was unfaithful.

LaDonna Glenn was not previously terminated because she had not been convicted of a crime.

Filip said people have come to the AWARE shelter charged as perpetrators in domestic violence situations, but they are not refused help until they are convicted. The agency has to afford employees the same rights as clients, she said.

Filip said Glenn was not suspended while her case was pending because AWARE cannot afford to pay an employee who is not working. She determined Glenn's continued work would not pose a threat.

Erin Harty of Adrian, who worked until Monday as a client advocate at the shelter, said residents were affected.

"They don't like being told what to do by someone who has domestic violence charges against them, and they all know. Everyone knows," Harty said.

Harty said she resigned, in part, because she did not think Glenn should have been allowed to work while her case was pending.

Efforts to reach Glenn have been unsuccessful. No one answered the door at her Blackman Township address. She was not at AWARE on Wednesday, Filip and Thurlby said.

Harty also is critical of Filip and the handling of criminally charged employees. AWARE staff were told not to speak of allegations, Harty said and Filip confirmed. People should maintain employees' confidentiality, Filip said.

Another employee, Sade Gant, pleaded no contest in April to a misdemeanor charge of maintaining a drug house. Gant initially was charged with a felony after police found heroin in her home.

Gant remains a client advocate at the shelter, assisting residents. She is to be sentenced June 17. Thurlby said the board or agency is waiting until Gant's case concludes to take possible action.

Gant's lawyer, Vincent Green, earlier said he expects she will be sentenced under a law that allows a person with no prior criminal record who successfully completes a term of probation to be spared a conviction.

Harty said someone with a possible drug connection should not work in the shelter, where some might struggle with drug use.

Filip said she could not discuss employee matters. She said policies and procedures are followed.

The agency is supervised and audited by other agencies or departments providing its funding, which largely comes from the state. Any wrongdoing and AWARE could or would lose funding, Filip said.

Thurlby said the board supports Filip. "I can tell you Becky does a very good job of keeping the board informed."

Other local leaders outside the agency, including the Jackson Police Chief Matt Heins and the United Way of Jackson County executive director Ken Toll, have said they support AWARE.








             
               













AWARE board president: If domestic violence program coordinator convicted of assault does not resign today, she will be terminated
By Danielle Salisbury
Danielle_Salisbury@mlive.com
The Jackson Citizen Patriot
May 19, 2010 at 1:29 PM
Updated May 19, 2010 at 4:16 PM
http://www.mlive.com/news/jackson/index.ssf/2010/05/award_board_president_if_domes.html

RELATED STORY: AWARE Inc. domestic violence program coordinator found guilty of assault


If the AWARE Inc. domestic violence program coordinator does not resign by 5 p.m. today, she will be terminated, board President Bree Thurlby said today.

A jury convicted LaDonna Glenn on Tuesday of the assault charge for threatening her husband with a hammer.

Oakland County Circuit Judge Martha Anderson is to sentence Glenn, 46, on June 21. Glenn, who has a leadership position at the largely state-funded Jackson agency, faces a maximum penalty of four years in prison and a $2,000 fine.

She was accused of going to her and her husband’s condominium in Southfield on Sept. 24, beating on the door with a hammer and twice raising the tool at her husband, George Glenn, 69, whom she alleged was unfaithful.

AWARE provides services, such as counseling and emergency shelter, to sexual assault and domestic violence victims.

                         













Update: Domestic violence program coordinator at AWARE Inc. found guilty of felonious assault for threatening husband with hammer
By Danielle Salisbury
Danielle_Salisbury@mlive.com
The Jackson Citizen Patriot
May 18, 2010 at 8:36 PM
Updated May 19, 2010 at 4:17 PM
http://www.mlive.com/news/jackson/index.ssf/2010/05/domestic_violence_coordinator.html

A jury Tuesday found the AWARE Inc. domestic violence program coordinator guilty of felonious assault for threatening her husband with a hammer.

Jurors deliberated about two hours and came to a conclusion shortly before 5 p.m., Oakland County Prosecutor Jessica Cooper said.

Oakland County Circuit Judge Martha Anderson is to sentence LaDonna Glenn, 46, on June 21. Glenn, who has a leadership position at the largely state-funded Jackson agency, faces a maximum penalty of four years in prison and a $2,000 fine

She was accused of going Sept. 24 to her and her husband’s condominium in Southfield, beating on the door with a hammer and twice raising the tool at her husband, George Glenn, 69, whom she alleged was unfaithful.


Efforts Tuesday to reach Glenn or her husband were unsuccessful. Her lawyer, Andrea Fanning, said little when reached by phone. “The jury has spoken,” Fanning said. She did not return a call seeking further comment.

Rebecca Filip, executive director of AWARE, which provides services and support to sexual assault and domestic violence victims, and board President Bree Thurlby did not respond to messages left at their offices about 5 p.m. Tuesday. When asked about Glenn, her employment or the charge against her, both women previously have declined comment.

“AWARE cannot comment on the exact circumstances surrounding an employee matter due to employee confidentiality and the law,” according to a letter submitted by the board last week to the Citizen Patriot.

“When the legal process is complete, the board determines what action it must take as an employer on a case-by-case basis. Issues involving AWARE’s employees are addressed pursuant to the agency’s policies and procedures. The board fully supports its executive director and all employees.”

Another AWARE employee, Sade Gant, 24, recently pleaded no contest to a misdemeanor charge of maintaining a drug house. She is to be sentenced June 17 in Jackson County Circuit Court.

LaDonna Glenn was arrested after George Glenn told police he had to grab his wife’s hands and wrestle her to the floor to remove the hammer from her grip, according to a Southfield Police Department report. She had been hitting a glass table with it and calling her husband a cheater.

When officers, who were summoned by a neighbor, arrived at the home, George Glenn was sitting on LaDonna Glenn as she lay on her stomach, pinning down her hands at the wrist, according to the report.

LaDonna Glenn told officers her husband forced her into the living room and threw her to the ground, hurting her right knee. She went to a hospital before going to jail.

She is out of jail on bond.

She has a Blackman Township address, according to court records, but Southfield police referred to the address in Oakland County as her and her husband’s home.

In the Jackson area, Glenn has spoken publicly about domestic violence issues and participated in efforts to prevent it or educate others about its effects.


               
               












Trial starts today for AWARE Inc. domestic violence program coordinator accused of threatening husband with a hammer
By Danielle Salisbury
Danielle_Salisbury@mlive.com
The Jackson Citizen Patriot
May 17, 2010 at 4:02 PM
Updated May 18, 2010 at 12:37 PM

A jury began hearing testimony Monday in the case against LaDonna Glenn, the AWARE Inc. domestic violence program coordinator accused of threatening her husband with a hammer.

Glenn’s trial is to continue Tuesday morning in Oakland County Circuit Court in Pontiac.

Southfield police arrested Glenn, 46, in September after officers allege she became angry at her husband, and threatened, but did not strike, George Glenn with a hammer inside their home.

She raised the weapon and attempted to hit him, according to a police report. The two struggled and he wrestled his wife to the living room floor, the report said.

LaDonna Glenn told police her husband threw her to the ground.

She believed her husband was being unfaithful, according to the report.

Glenn has talked about the issue of domestic violence at community events as an employee for AWARE in Jackson, which provides services such as counseling and emergency shelter to victims of domestic violence and sexual assault.

Court records show she has a Blackman Township address, but police referred to the residence in Southfield as her and her husband’s home.

                   
           












 AWARE Inc. dealing with employees in legal trouble
By Danielle Salisbury
Danielle_Salisbury@mlive.com
The Jackson Citizen Patriot
on May 02, 2010 at 12:29 AM
Updated May 03, 2010 at 11:47 AM
http://www.mlive.com/news/jackson/index.ssf/2010/05/aware_inc_dealing_with_employe.html

Since September, an AWARE Inc. employee has been charged with a felony, another pleaded no contest to a drug crime, and both employees continue to work at the largely state-funded agency.

LaDonna Glenn, domestic violence program coordinator, is facing a felonious assault charge in Oakland County for allegedly attacking her husband with a hammer.

Another employee, Sade Gant, 24, pleaded no contest in April to maintaining a drug house, a misdemeanor punishable by up to two years in prison and a $25,000 fine. Jackson County Circuit Judge John McBain will sentence her June 17.

"It doesn't sound good," said Marla Gilpin, former president of the board at AWARE, which provides services such as emergency shelter and counseling to victims of domestic violence and sexual abuse or assault.

Others also expressed some concern about criminal allegations against staff members at an agency tasked with helping victims.

"It just struck a wrong chord with me," said Deb Natschke of Michigan Center, who has donated items to the AWARE shelter and was bothered when she learned of Glenn's alleged act of violence. "It just took me as … you are not practicing what you are preaching."

Others expressed support for the agency, whose services Jackson leaders called invaluable.

"You are going to have employees who have problems in their personal lives," said Sheriff Dan Heyns.

It would be a mistake to allow the accusations to undermine AWARE's work, he said.

"You have to separate the two, the personal problems and the organization and their mission," Heyns said, "and their mission is a sound one."

Efforts this week to reach AWARE Executive Director Rebecca Filip were unsuccessful. Both she and current board president Bree Thurlby earlier said they could not comment on personnel matters.

Glenn, 46, and her lawyer also have declined comment.

Messages left for Gant were not returned.

Gant's lawyer, Vincent Green, said he did not believe the criminal proceedings will affect Gant's ability to do her job. He did not know her duties or title at AWARE.

The crime was "relatively minor," she has no alcohol or drug problems and the charge, in the end, likely will stay off her record, he said.

He expects Gant will be sentenced under a law that allows a person with no prior convictions to serve a term of probation. If the person complies with all court orders and conditions, he or she is spared a conviction.

Blackman Township Public Safety Detective Chris Boulter said Gant's live-in boyfriend delivered drugs to someone who was working with the police and officers searched their home Oct. 8.

They found a "couple ounces of marijuana" and a quarter ounce of heroin in the kitchen silverware drawer, he said. He called the amount of heroin "significant."

Both Gant and her boyfriend, Rama Tyson, 34, were arrested. Tyson pleaded guilty to a felony drug charge. McBain is to sentence him May 20.

Gant also was charged with possession with intent to deliver heroin, a felony, but it was dismissed in exchange for her plea.

Part of both the Jackson County Domestic Violence Coordinating Council and the Sexual Assault Task Force, Boulter said he believed the AWARE staff was surprised by Gant's criminal case.

"My interpretation of it was that they were shocked, that she was a good employee," Boulter said.

Boulter said he knew "peripherally" of Glenn's case.

She is accused of becoming angry about her husband's alleged infidelity and threatening, but not striking, George Glenn, 68, with a hammer Sept. 24 inside their home in Southfield.

According to court records, both Glenn and Gant have Blackman Township addresses — they share the same street — but police referred to the Southfield apartment as Glenn and her husband's home.

Boulter said Glenn has been "very supportive" of domestic violence victims and programs.

"I have never even seen the lady raise her voice, let alone become physically violent towards anybody," Boulter said.

Glenn told Southfield police she banged on the door with a hammer. After her husband let her inside, he threw her to the ground, hurting her, she said.

In the past, Glenn has said she was a victim of domestic violence.

Her former husband attacked her in 1999, she wrote when she sought a personal protection order In August.

She had a run-in at the AWARE shelter with Nakia Smith, Glenn's former husband's niece. She said Smith lunged at her and the shelter manager.

"I really fear for my life," she wrote in the order request, which a judge granted in September. "I don't want to relive another generation of stalking and physical harm with this dangerous family."

Smith's aunt, Rhonda Smith, said Glenn requested the order and had Smith ousted from the shelter "out of malice."

"She is a threat to the safety of all the women that are in there trying to do the right thing," Rhonda Smith said.

Until Glenn is proven guilty, she should enjoy a presumption of innocence, said District Judge R. Darryl Mazur, head of the county domestic violence court. "She may have very legitimate defenses."

Some area leaders, including United Way Executive Director Ken Toll and Jackson Police Chief Matt Heins, said they are confident AWARE will properly deal with Glenn and Gant's situations.

It might be different if an employee had been convicted of a felony, Toll said.

"There is due process, and that is being followed," he said.

He said United Way will continue its support of AWARE's mission. The agency's overall performance is impressive and its progress reports to United Way show it is accomplishing its self-set goals, said Irene Ellison LeCrone, United Way community solutions team manager.

LeCrone said United Way provided AWARE with $60,000 in community contributions for its 2008-2009 operating budget, This was used for domestic-violence and sexual-assault programs.

United Way's allocations amounted to about 7 percent of AWARE's total annual budget last year of $857,000.

Michigan provides 65 percent of the agency's money, according to AWARE's 2008-2009 annual report.

The Michigan Domestic Violence Prevention and Treatment Board administers funds to AWARE and 43 other similar service providers, but its executive director, Debi Cain, would not address specific questions about employees.

"Any personnel maters are handled directly by the agency. We trust that the agency handles those issues in an appropriate matter," Christina Fecher, Michigan Department of Human Services spokeswoman, wrote in an e-mail. The board works within DHS.

Any agency contracting with DHS must have a criminal background check done on any new employee or employee who works directly with clients or has access to client information, Fecher wrote.

Employees implicated in misdemeanor or felony crimes must notify their employer in writing within 10 days of the event, Fecher wrote.

Gilpin, who was board president at the time both women were charged with crimes, did not know of the allegations against either woman until informed by the Citizen Patriot.

She said only Filip reports to the board. It is Filip's responsibility to manage the staff. Still, she said she thinks the board should have been told of the cases so its members were not caught off guard.

She was surprised to learn of Glenn, she said. "It is just one of those things you can't believe, you can't fathom."

                       














Voice of the People letter: AWARE shelter official handled situation badly
Published: Monday, April 26, 2010, 9:45 AM
Updated: Monday, April 26, 2010, 10:45 AM
By Jackson Citizen Patriot staff
The Jackson Citizen Patriot
http://www.mlive.com/opinion/jackson/index.ssf/2010/04/aware_shelter_official_handled.html


BLACKMAN TOWNSHIP —As a survivor of sexual abuse and physical abuse, I am absolutely appalled that LaDonna Glenn is still in her position at the AWARE shelter. At the very least, she should have been removed from her position and put on leave last fall until the courts decided this problem.

She admitted to police that she went to her husband's residence, took a hammer with her and beat on the door, and when she gained entrance to the apartment she took the hammer inside with her. What really happened is up to the courts.

But looking at this in a logical way, what adult would take a hammer to a residence unless there was intent to use it as a weapon? With such a weapon, there was the danger of violence occurring. She was angry, and her way of resolving infidelity is with a hammer? What message does this send to those she is counseling?

I am a survivor of my abuse, and I can see that this woman has no place at the AWARE shelter if she can't control herself or react in a way that is acceptable to the community and those she is counseling. All this because she alleged her husband was having an affair.

My advice is to get the facts before you react so strongly. As I would tell anyone, no man is worth what she will have to answer for because she reacted very inappropriately.

At this time I am withdrawing any support for this agency until this woman is out of her position.

— Mary Lounsbery

               
                   












Domestic violence program coordinator for AWARE Inc. faces felony charge after allegedly threatening husband with hammer
By Danielle Salisbury
Danielle_Salisbury@mlive.com
The Jackson Citizen Patriot
April 19, 2010 at 6:05 AM
Updated April 19, 2010 at 11:11 AM

The domestic violence program coordinator for AWARE Inc., in Jackson is facing a felony charge after police reported she assaulted her husband with a hammer.

LaDonna Glenn, 46, is awaiting trial in Oakland County, where she was charged last fall with felonious assault. The felony carries a maximum penalty of four years in prison and a $2,000 fine. A trial is scheduled for May 17 before Circuit Judge Martha Anderson.

Glenn is accused of becoming angry about her husband’s alleged infidelity and threatening, but not striking, George Glenn, 68, with a hammer Sept. 24 inside their home in Southfield.

When contacted recently at AWARE — which offers counseling, emergency shelter and other services to victims of domestic violence and sexual assault — Glenn deferred comment to her attorney, Andrea Fanning.

Fanning said she would not comment because Glenn did not authorize her to do so.

AWARE’s board president, Bree Thurlby, and Executive Director Rebecca Filip also would not comment. As her employer, Thurlby said she could not say anything.

Glenn’s husband told police she came to their apartment in Southfield and started beating on the front door with a hammer, yelling “… You cheater,” according to a police report.

He opened the door and she raised the hammer and attempted to hit him with it, but he was able to move out of the way, according to the report. She forced her way into the kitchen, where she began hitting a glass table with the tool. Her husband tried to stop her and she again raised the hammer, the report states.

“It doesn’t appear there was injury or contact,” said Oakland County Prosecutor Jessica Cooper, who was scanning the court file.

The two struggled with the hammer. Eventually, George Glenn wrestled his wife to the living room floor. He straddled her to keep her restrained as she laid on her stomach, according to the report.

LaDonna Glenn told police she hit the door, which was locked, with a hammer to open it. When her husband let her inside, she placed the hammer forcefully on the table. Her husband threw her to the ground, hurting her right knee. He pinned her and would not let her free, she said.

A neighbor called the police. Before officers announced their presence, they heard a woman they later discovered to be LaDonna Glenn, saying, “… Get off me, you cheater,” according to the report.

When the officers knocked, the woman began yelling, “Help me. He is trying to hurt me,” according to the report.

LaDonna Glenn had a knee injury and a cut to her lower lip and went to a hospital before heading to jail. She has since been released.

Glenn believed her husband was being unfaithful, which brought about the confrontation, both she and George Glenn told police.

At the time of the alleged assault, they had been married about 1 1/2 years, police reported.

According to the court record, LaDonna Glenn has a Blackman Township address, but police referred to the Southfield apartment as her and her husband’s home. The voicemail machine at the home states both her and her husband’s names. Efforts to reach her husband were not successful.

She appeared as recently as April 7 at a community event about domestic violence. She spoke at Jackson Community College’s second annual Understanding Domestic Violence forum, at which a woman spoke of physical and emotional abuse she endured years ago.







         



  Although LaDonna Glenn was arrested and charged with felonious assault in September 2009, she still maintained her position as program coordinator for the AWARE domestic violence shelter....          











Forum on domestic violence features abuse victim's emotional story
By Jackson Citizen Patriot staff
The Jackson Citizen Patriot
April 08, 2010 at 4:37 PM
Updated April 08, 2010 at 4:47 PM
http://www.mlive.com/news/jackson/index.ssf/2010/04/forum_on_domestic_violence_fea.html

Nikki Thomsen couldn't hold back the tears as she recalled physical and emotional abuse from more than a decade ago.

"I need to apologize, because I didn't have time to emotionally prepare for this," she told about 75 people at Jackson Community College's second annual Understanding Domestic Violence forum today.

"The scars from the physical abuse have healed," said Thomsen, of Hillsdale, an employee in JCC's human resources department. "I still deal with the emotional abuse every day."

Organizers of the forum hope attendees could learn from Thomsen's experiences.

"When I listen to her, it grieves me because she still blames herself," said LaDonna Glenn, domestic violence program coordinator at the AWARE shelter in Jackson.

"That would have happened to anyone he was with," she told Thomsen. "Not just you."

Thomsen didn't go into detail about the abuse she suffered as a teenager.

"I had met this guy," she said. "I thought he was wonderful. He walked me to all my classes. You know, he took me out, introduced me to all his friends."

Eventually her boyfriend turned her against her parents and she moved in with him, Thomsen said. "That's really when it started," she said. "He was just awful. He would do so many cruel things to humiliate me."

Years later, she said, she learned her ex-boyfriend ended up in prison.

"I'm married now to a wonderful man," she said, drawing applause from the audience. "And I have two beautiful children."

At the end of her talk, she urged audience members to refer any domestic abuse victims they know to AWARE, 783-2861.

After the forum, Lee Hampton, director of multicultural relations, at JCC, echoed her comments, saying too few are willing to report violence — whether it's domestic abuse or information about the recent rash of gun violence in the city.

"We're hoping to bring greater awareness to this plaguing problem in our community and encourage people who are victims or if they know someone is a perpetrator to speak up," he said.

             





        











Domestic Violence Court helps re-offender rate decline; 370 have "graduated" from court-ordered counseling
By Fredricka Paul
Jackson Citizen Patriot
The Jackson Citizen Patriot
January 03, 2010 at 8:48 PM
Updated January 04, 2010 at 10:38 AM
http://www.mlive.com/news/jackson/index.ssf/2010/01/domestic_violence_court_helps.html

A Jackson man accused of battering his girlfriend stood in front of District Judge R. Darryl Mazur on a recent Monday afternoon, shaking as he prepared to read a letter he wrote.

The victim, who is now the man's fiancée, wiped away her tears as she listened to him apologize and speak about how counseling he received as a result of Mazur's Domestic Violence Court has changed his life and improved his attitude.

Since the Domestic Violence Court in Jackson County began in 2005, almost 370 men and women have "graduated" after completing court-ordered counseling. The court was created through a partnership between the Jackson County District Court and AWARE Inc., an agency that works with victims of domestic violence or sexual abuse.

The goal, Mazur said, is to hold abusers accountable for their actions and offer support and guidance so they don't re-offend. He calls his caseload "homicide-prevention cases."

Mazur said the message to the community is simple: "Domestic violence is not going to be tolerated in Jackson County."

Jackson's Domestic Violence Court is one of about 30 such courts in Michigan, Mazur said. Since its creation, the percentage of domestic violence re-offenders here has decreased from almost 25 percent to less than 10 percent, Mazur said.

Police have responded to about 9,000 domestic-violence calls in Jackson County each year for the past several years.

In 2008, there were 9,967 domestic-violence calls, and about 500 to 600 of them resulted in charges that put them before a judge, Mazur said.

Those selected for the specialty court have been identified as being in a relationship where abuse is present, Mazur said. This includes dating, living together, having a child together or being married or divorced. The idea, he said, is to use criminal law to get an abuser into treatment.

The cases in the specialty courts are expedited to reduce the number of victims who may change their minds about pressing charges, Mazur said.

If a suspect wants a trial, it is scheduled within five weeks, instead of the couple of months it takes in traditional district and circuit courts. Nevertheless, victims not willing to step forward, or choosing to back out of their decision to testify, is still a downfall of the program, he said.

After being arrested and charged, offenders are ordered not to have contact with the victim. Once a person accepts responsibility and enters a guilty plea, Mazur said he or she is sentenced to 15 to 24 months of probation and assigned a probation officer.

Probation officers choose from three local programs they believe will best help the offender, Mazur said. Programs range from 26, 30 or 52 weeks and participants must pay their own fees, which average about $25 per week, Mazur said.

The programs are Catholic Charities' Aggression Intervention, which uses group facilitators to help people recognize that domestic violence is a choice, and acknowledge the use of power and control in their relationships in the hope of changing beliefs and behavior toward nonviolence; LifeWays' Recovery Technology Batterers Intervention Program, which uses workbooks and group sessions to teach anger and impulse control and appropriate coping skills; and STRIDE's Batterers Intervention Program, which uses group and one-on-one sessions and peer feedback.

"It gives us some individualism as far as treatment is concerned," Mazur said.

Those sentenced to 15 months' probation meet with Mazur about six times while going through counseling, he said.

"The idea of the specialty court is to have the court more involved in the rehabilitation process," Mazur said. "We make examples of their successes and failures and discuss areas of particular need. The idea is to be more of a father figure than a judge figure."

If offenders complete the program and don't re-offend, they receive no further jail time. First-time offenders can have the charge expunged. On average, offenders pay about $1,000 in fines, Mazur said.

LaDonna Glenn, domestic-violence program coordinator at AWARE, said she thinks Mazur's court has made a tremendous difference.

"It has helped with accountability," she said. "I think Judge Mazur is not trying to break up families, he is trying to improve their actions and make them more accountable. It has put a dent in changing that type of behavior with batterers."

But 9,000 domestic-violence calls to police a year is still a lot, she said. And that number does not reflect all incidents of domestic violence, Glenn said.

She believes more people are bypassing the police and using AWARE's services.

"There is still a whole population of people who don't want to report, they don't want to get police reports," Glenn said.

And, of course, there is the embarrassment factor. Women too often think they caused the abuse, she said.

Batterers come from all walks of life, all ages and all races, Glenn said.

They can be uneducated or jobless, or college graduates or CEOs.

That's why "Curbing domestic violence is not a one-sided solution," Glenn said.

In 2003, the Real Men Project was created to stop domestic violence before it starts, said Dani Meier, founder of the group.

The program aims to encourage fathers to model healthy relationships to their children and teach them that violence in relationships is never acceptable, he said.

Next year AWARE will introduce a new movement, related to the Real Men Project, in which men in the community will mentor men and boys to help change their mindset on domestic violence, said Becky Filip, AWARE's executive director.

"It's a call to action to men to help stop domestic violence," Filip said. "A lot of people look at it as a relationship problem and not as a crime against women."

The program will focus on awareness and education and encourage men to get involved in preventing domestic violence, Filip said.

"The public still has the mindset that what goes on behind closed doors is not the government's business," Mazur said. "I don't believe that."

— Staff Writer Leanne Smith contributed to this report.











             



                 














In wake of high-profile domestic violence case, topic discussed at Jackson forum
By Tarryl Jackson
tjackso1@mlive.com
The Jackson Citizen Patriot
March 26, 2009 at 6:26 PM
Updated March 27, 2009 at 10:24 AM

There is nothing atypical about Chris Brown's alleged domestic assault on fellow R&B star Rihanna other than their fame, local experts said today.

"Domestic violence is a pattern of behavior to gain power and control over your partner," said Ladonna Glenn, domestic violence program coordinator at AWARE, Inc a shelter in Jackson. "It's not more common; it's just being reported more."

Brown appeared in court March 5, charged with two counts of felony assault. The case has brought more attention to domestic violence.

About 20 people came out to openly discuss domestic violence at a forum at Jackson Community College today.

Domestic violence is not just a women's issue, said Dani Meier, founder of the Real MEN (Men Embracing Non-violence) Project in Jackson. "It's our responsibility as men to step up," he said. "We have to be a part of preventing it."

The three main forms of domestic violence are physical, sexual, and emotional, Glenn said. "The only one that is not illegal is emotional, which is very prevalent," she said.

Although women are traditionally the victims of domestic violence, they can be abusers as well, Meier said.

Abusers often blame the victims or others for their behavior, said Adrienne Rowland, clinical director of Catholic Charities of Jackson County.

They can also be very manipulative and charismatic, she said. "There's no way of telling just by looking at them," Rowland said. "They only attack their intimate partner."

The average victim leaves and returns to the abuser seven times before leaving for good, Glenn said.

The most dangerous situation for a victim is when he or she is about to leave, Meier said. "That's when the violence escalates," he said. "It's a tricky situation to get out of safely."

Mekeisha Alcock, a sophomore at JCC from Blissfield, said any information about domestic violence is spreading awareness.

"It's an important issue in our society today," she said.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Officer Patricia Katie Ryan Williams Wrongful-death lawsuit - Detroit PD

I am working on this post - please check back for updates...


Also see:
Murder of Officer Patricia [Katie] Ryan Williams - Detroit PD






Court filings in wrongful death lawsuit
May 24, 2014










Court filings in wrongful death lawsuit
April 23, 2014






Lawsuit over slain Detroit police officer to proceed after OK from bankruptcy judge
By Khalil AlHajal
January 30, 2014 at 3:02 PM
Updated January 30, 2014 at 3:58 PM
MLive
http://www.mlive.com/news/detroit/index.ssf/2014/01/lawsuit_over_slain_detroit_pol.html





DETROIT, MI -- U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Steven Rhodes will allow a lawsuit over the 2009 death of a Detroit police officer to proceed, according to court documents filed this week.

Hundreds of lawsuits against the city were put on hold in July 2013 when Emergency Manger Kevyn Orr took the Detroit into bankruptcy, citing $18 billion in debt.

Deborah Ryan, who sued the city in 2011 over the death of her daughter Patricia "Katie" Williams, asked Rhodes in September to lift the automatic stay of her case.

He granted that request Tuesday, "solely to the extent necessary to allow the Lawsuit to proceed to a final nonappealable judgment."

Williams was a Detroit police officer killed by her husband Edward Williams, also a Detroit cop, in Canton Township in 2009. 

She sued Detroit, two Detroit police supervisors, Canton Township and two Canton police officers, claiming they failed to fully address signs including a suicide note that indicated her daughter's husband was unstable and dangerous.

Edward Williams shot and killed Katie Williams on Sept. 22, 2009 in a parking lot between the Canton Township library and police station before turning the gun on himself.

The couple left behind a 9-year-old son.

The lawsuit cites the Civil Rights Act, claiming authorities would have acted differently had the Williams not been police officers. 

Both the city and the township denied liability and filed motions for summary judgment.

The last hearing in the case was held in federal court on July 18, 2013, the same day Detroit filed for bankruptcy protection.

Any judgement against the city in the case will be subject to cuts determined by a final plan of adjustment in the bankruptcy case, Rhodes noted. 

Orr plans to submit to Rhodes a proposed plan for restructuring the city's debt next month.














Bankruptcy judge allows case involving Detroit officer's killing to proceed
January 30, 2014
Detroit Free Press
http://www.freep.com/article/20140130/NEWS01/301300028/Lawsuit-proceeds-Detroit-bankruptcy




A federal bankruptcy judge has given a grieving mother the green light to proceed with her lawsuit against the City of Detroit over her daughter’s death, making her the first such plaintiff to successfully challenge a stay order that has frozen more than 500 lawsuits because of the bankruptcy.

U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Steven Rhodes lifted the stay order — with conditions — on Tuesday for Deborah Ryan of Canton, who is suing the Detroit Police Department over the 2009 shooting death of her daughter, a police officer. Ryan’s lawsuit alleges the police department failed to protect her daughter from an unstable husband. Her daughter, Patricia (Katie) Williams, was a Detroit police officer who was shot and killed in September 2009 in a murder-suicide by her husband, who also was a police officer in the Detroit homicide unit.

Rhodes agreed to let Ryan’s lawsuit proceed after both sides in the case hashed out an agreement to let the case move forward. In his order, Rhodes wrote that relief from the stay “is granted solely to the extent necessary to allow the lawsuit to proceed to a final non-appealable judgment.”

Under Rhodes’ order, if Ryan wins any potential judgment from the city, that judgment is subject to treatment under any Chapter 9 plan of adjustment.

Ryan said she was grateful to Rhodes for letting her case proceed and relieved that it may finally get to a jury.

“It’s been four years and my family — especially my grandson — we need to have closure,” Ryan said.

Added her lawyer, Bill Goodman: “It’s helpful that the judge has lifted the stay so that Mrs. Ryan can appropriately and adequately enforce her constitutional rights in federal court.”

Ryan’s suit alleges the department went out of its way to protect the husband when it could have taken steps to prevent the shooting. According to the lawsuit, the department canceled an alert that was issued to law enforcement about the husband’s mental status and concerns that he was a threat to her daughter.

Detroit police found the husband to be competent and canceled the alert, so he was never picked up by the authorities, the lawsuit states. About 30 hours after the alert was called off, the husband shot and killed his wife and himself in a parking lot.

In court documents, the city has denied any wrongdoing.













Wrongful-death lawsuit may proceed, despite Detroit bankruptcy
7:45 PM, January 27, 2014
Detroit Free Press
http://www.freep.com/article/20140127/NEWS01/301270106/Detroit-bankruptcy-lawsuit-police

Bankrupt or not, the city of Detroit has agreed to let a mother proceed with a lawsuit against the Detroit Police Department over the 2009 shooting death of her daughter, a police officer who was killed in a murder-suicide by her husband.

All lawsuits against the city — more than 500 — have been put on hold because of the bankruptcy. U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Steven Rhodes still has to agree to let the case proceed.

Plaintiff Deborah Ryan of Canton wants the stay order lifted. Both sides have agreed to let the case proceed and are waiting approval from Rhodes.

Ryan’s lawsuit alleges the Police Department failed to protect her daughter from an unstable husband. Her daughter, Patricia (Katie) Williams, was a Detroit police officer who was shot and killed in September 2009 in a murder-suicide by her husband, who also was a police officer in the Detroit homicide unit.

Ryan’s suit alleges the department went out of its way to protect the husband when it could have taken steps to prevent the shooting. Ryan said she’s relieved her case may finally get to a jury.

“It’s been four years and my family — especially my grandson — we need to have closure. And we want to make sure that people who we feel caused this to occur, including the city, is held accountable for their actions,” Ryan said. “It’s the first kind of good news we’ve had in years.”

Ryan’s lawyer, Bill Goodman, said the lawsuit also challenges what he believes is a pervasive problem in the DPD: officers abusing women, and nothing being done about it.

“That point has to be driven home and the only way to drive it home is to have a jury … tell the DPD what it can get away with and what it can’t get away with,” Goodman said. “Its handling of Katie’s case was unacceptable ... (Police) would not step up to the plate and see that this guy got arrested before he did serious harm to his wife and himself. It was clear that he was a basket case and no one wanted to get involved in the problem.”

According to the lawsuit, the department canceled an alert that was issued to law enforcement about the husband’s mental status and concerns that he was a threat to her daughter.

Detroit police found the husband to be competent and canceled the alert, so he was never picked up by the authorities, the lawsuit states. About 30 hours after the alert was called off, the husband shot and killed his wife and himself in a parking lot.

In court documents, the city has denied any wrongdoing.

The city also denied showing favoritism to the husband, stating “there is no evidence” that he was treated differently “because he was a police officer. In fact, the argument is counterintuitive, given Patricia (Katie) Williams was also a Detroit police officer.”














Wrongful Death lawsuit against Detroit  
Filed by Deborah Ryan [Mother of Officer Patricia Ryan Williams]
RE: OIDV murder of Officer Patricia [Katie] Ryan Williams 
October 09, 2013
http://docs.justia.com/cases/federal/district-courts/michigan/miedce/4:2011cv10900/256616/120/0.pdf?1381404590







































Detroit City Council
Wrongful Death lawsuit against Detroit  
Filed by Deborah Ryan [Mother of Officer Patricia Ryan Williams]
RE: OIDV murder of Officer Patricia [Katie] Ryan Williams 
October 08, 2013
http://www.detroitmi.gov/Portals/0/docs/cityclerk/calendar_2013/Agenda/Agenda%2010-08-13.pdf



























Detroit must submit settlement plan for all lawsuits or case of slain officer will proceed
By Khalil AlHajal
October 08, 2013 at 7:40 PM
Updated October 09, 2013 at 2:25 AM
http://www.mlive.com/news/detroit/index.ssf/2013/10/detroit_must_submit_settlement.html


DETROIT, MI -- U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Steven Rhodes plans to lift a stay of litigation against the city in the case of a slain police officer unless Detroit develops a plan to settle all its lawsuits within 35 days.

Detroit entered bankruptcy proceedings in July, citing over $18 billion in debt, resulting in hundreds of lawsuits against the city being put on hold.

Deborah Ryan, who sued the city over the 2009 death of her daughter, asked Rhodes last month to lift the stay.

Ryan's daughter Patricia "Katie" Williams was a Detroit police officer killed by her husband Edward Williams, also a Detroit cop, in Canton Township in 2009.

She sued Detroit, two Detroit police supervisors, Canton Township and two Canton police officers, claiming they failed to fully address signs including a suicide note that indicated her daughter's husband was unstable and dangerous.

Edward Williams shot and killed Katie Williams on Sept. 22, 2009 in a parking lot between the Canton Township library and police station before turning the gun on himself.

The couple left behind a 9-year-old son.

The lawsuit cites the Civil Rights Act, claiming authorities would have acted differently had the Williams not been police officers. 

Both the city and the township denied liability and filed motions for summary judgment.

The last hearing in the case was held in federal court on July 18, the same day Detroit filed for bankruptcy protection.

Rhodes on Tuesday granted Ryan's motion to lift the stay, "unless, within 35 days, the City files a motion for approval of an efficient process for liquidating all of the tort claims."













Detroit bankruptcy proceedings head back to federal court
Posted: 10/02/2013
By: Jim Kiertzner
WXYZ News
http://www.wxyz.com/dpp/news/region/detroit/detroit-bankruptcy-proceedings-head-back-to-federal-court



video


DETROIT (WXYZ) - Detroit Bankruptcy Judge Steven Rhodes is hearing 3 cases today that are seeking to have the automatic stay lifted on other cases pending with the City of Detroit. 

The first one is a suit by Deborah Ann Ryan against Detroit, the Police Department and some officers who did not prevent the murder of her daughter, Patricia Williams, on September 22, 2009 by her husband, Detroit Police Officer Edward Williams, who then committed suicide. 

Ryan's case is on hold, as are some 700 other individual cases in Detroit. 

Also, another case seeks permission from Judge Rhodes to allow an Administrative Law Judge to rule on whether the General Retirement System can resume issuing a 13th check to retirees that was banned by the City Council in 2011. An attorney for the city argues Detroit employee pension underfunding is a critical issue in bankruptcy and the 13th check was an unsound practice that cost the pension fund $1.9 billion dollars. 

Heather Lennox from Jones Day argues the bankruptcy court should decide this issue and that the issue is far-reaching for the city. 

Another item in front of Judge Rhodes is whether a constitutional challenge to the Emergency Manager and Michigan Public Act 436 can proceed before another judge in Federal Court. It was filed by the NAACP and a group of individuals. That case was also automatically stayed by the bankruptcy filing. 














Detroit bankruptcy judge seats hearing in slain officer lawsuit
By Robert Snell
Detroit News
Oct 2, 2013, 4:44 pm
http://live.detroitnews.com/update/detroit-bankruptcy-judge-seats-hearing-slain-officer-lawsuit/

U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Steven Rhodes scheduled an Oct. 8 hearing before deciding whether to unfreeze a lawsuit filed by the family of a slain Detroit police officer.

The hearing will give Detroit lawyers a chance to prove the city would be harmed if the lawsuit continues in federal court.

Attorney William Goodman asked the judge for permission to seek compensation for the estate of slain Detroit officer Patricia Williams, who was killed by her husband, Ed Williams, a Detroit homicide detective, in a murder-suicide in the Canton Public Library parking lot on Sept. 23, 2009.

Patricia Williams’ mother, Deborah Ryan, argues the police department is liable for a “state-created danger” for not hospitalizing Ed Williams after a string of domestic violence and suicidal incidents.

The lawsuit is two years old but was frozen after Detroit sought bankruptcy protection on July 18.













Wrongful Death lawsuit against Detroit
Filed by Deborah Ryan [Mother of Officer Patricia Ryan Williams]
RE: OIDV murder of Officer Patricia [Katie] Ryan Williams 
September 25, 2013
http://www.kccllc.net/detroit/document/1353846130925000000000011

















































































Wrongful Death lawsuit against Detroit  
Filed by Deborah Ryan [Mother of Officer Patricia Ryan Williams]
RE: OIDV murder of Officer Patricia [Katie] Ryan Williams 
Case No. 13-53846 
September 11, 2013
http://media.mlive.com/news/detroit_impact/other/motion%20to%20lift%20stay%20patricia%20williams%20detroit.pdf



























Lawsuits against Detroit in limbo because of bankruptcy
Many with cases against the city fear they might not be resolved because the bankruptcy filing has put the cases on hold.
Tresa Baldas
Detroit Free Press 9:04 p.m. EDT August 4, 2013
August 04, 2013
USA Today
http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2013/08/04/detroit-bankruptcy-lawsuits-legal-limbo/2617597/

DETROIT -- For retiree Gerald Wilcox, Detroit's bankruptcy came as a one-two punch.

The first blow took aim at his pension, which he fears is in jeopardy; the second paralyzed his malicious-prosecution lawsuit against the city of Detroit — a case that makes his blood boil.

Wilcox, a married father of three who worked two decades for the city as a bus mechanic and maintenance worker, was arrested in January and jailed for 16 days for an armed robbery he never committed. The police had the wrong Gerald Wilcox, records show, and Wilcox was cleared.

"I want these officers to know what they did was wrong. And I want the city and everyone involved to pay financially," said Wilcox, who vividly recalls his wife calling the precinct all night long, telling officers, "You've got the wrong guy."

Wilcox, who fears justice might be out of his reach, is not alone.

According to the city of Detroit's Law Department, the city gets hit with 600 to 700 lawsuits in any given year. But those suits now are on hold, with plaintiffs getting bad news by the day about their cases being stayed because of the bankruptcy. Now, many fear they might not see their cases resolved. Others worry they'll just get measly settlements.

The city is urging plaintiffs to sit tight and wait.

"This is to give the city breathing room, so to speak, to settle its bankruptcy issues and to restructure without the distraction of ongoing and pending lawsuits," said Bill Nowling, spokesman for Detroit emergency manager Kevyn Orr.

According to Nowling, one of Orr's goals is to help Detroit limit the number of frivolous and nuisance lawsuits it gets hit with each year, noting the city spends about $20 million annually settling legal claims against it. He also noted that when the city comes out of bankruptcy, the civil lawsuits will start up where they left off.

"Everyone will have due process, and their cases will be heard," Nowling said.

'A slap in the face'

Attorney Julie Hurwitz doesn't buy it.

"That is not the way it works," said Hurwitz, who said she took a crash course in bankruptcy law that has her bracing for the worst: The lawsuits either will be discharged completely, she said, or plaintiffs will get offered "pennies on the dollar."

"Our clients' due process rights to their day in court have been ripped out from under them," said Hurwitz, whose firm has four civil suits pending against the city. "The vindication of our clients' constitutional rights are going down the toilet."

She stressed: "There are definitely human lives that are being decimated by this travesty."

Deborah Ryan of Canton is suing the city over the 2009 death of her daughter Patricia (Katie) Williams, a Detroit police officer who was shot and killed in a murder-suicide by her husband, who also was a police officer in the Detroit homicide unit.

"Our lives stopped that day," said a tearful Ryan. She believes the city owes her family an apology, claiming Detroit police went out of their way to protect one of their own: the husband.

"They forgot that my daughter also was one of their own. Why didn't they protect her?" Ryan said. "She loved the city of Detroit. And she loved her job as a police officer."

Ryan, meanwhile, hopes to persuade the bankruptcy court to let her case proceed — an option that's open to all plaintiffs — arguing she has suffered long enough, and so has her daughter's now 13-year-old son.

"This is just a slap in the face to our family," Ryan said of the lawsuit getting put on hold. "I just want to go forward. We've waited a long time — a long time. We just want to move on. ... And I want my grandson to know I'm doing everything for his mom, and that she did not die in vain."

In court documents, the city has denied any wrongdoing.

The city also denied showing favoritism to the husband, stating "there is no evidence" that he was treated differently "because he was a police officer. In fact, the argument is counterintuitive, given Patricia (Katie) Williams was also a Detroit police officer."

Delay 'is injustice'

Ryan, though, is crying injustice, as are plenty of others whose cases are now in limbo.

On Tuesday alone, for example, six police brutality cases against the city were put on hold, as was a woman's lawsuit that claimed the city wrongfully damaged her apartment building during a demolition project.
For constitutional scholars and plaintiff lawyers, Detroit's bankruptcy highlights an all-too-common problem in the courts: delayed justice.

"Justice delayed is injustice," said attorney Wolfgang Mueller, who represents Wilcox and a handful of other plaintiffs suing the city for police misconduct, unlawful arrests and malicious prosecution.

Mueller said he's used to the city delaying lawsuits, but that the bankruptcy is just making it worse.

"The City of Detroit's typical tactic has been to delay. ... This obviously is a different animal," Mueller said.
Then there is the Mike's Hard Lemonade plaintiff, Christopher Ratte of Ann Arbor, Mich., whose 2008 ordeal at a Detroit Tigers game landed his 7-year-old son in state custody and him being ordered out of his house.

Ratte accidentally bought his son a Mike's Hard Lemonade at the baseball game, landing him in court. He didn't know it contained alcohol, and the case was eventually dismissed. But it prompted the American Civil Liberties Union to challenge a state law that lets police remove kids from their parents without proving the children are in actual danger.

The bankruptcy has snagged that lawsuit, too, even though it's not about money.

"We don't want these important constitutional issues to be thrown out along with the city's debts," said Rana Elmir, deputy director of the Michigan ACLU, who is baffled by what's going on. "Our No. 1 priority is to vindicate the constitutional rights of our clients and for policy change, so we don't see ourselves as a creditor."

U.S. Bankruptcy Court Judge Steven Rhodes, who is overseeing Detroit's bankruptcy, appears to be taking some action to help the aggrieved civil suit plaintiffs. On Friday, he suggested that a committee be formed to handle what he expects will be a huge volume of requests from civil plaintiffs seeking relief. While all civil suits have been frozen, plaintiffs can still petition the court and ask for a continuance.

"I think the last thing any of us wants is a flood of motions," Rhodes said, later adding, "It seems to me we ought to think about a way to manage that potential chaos." Heather Lennox, a Jones Day attorney who is representing the city in the bankruptcy case, said the city is already working out a solution to this issue. She did not elaborate.

Meanwhile, Elmir of the ACLU remains baffled that constitutional issues have been put on hold because of Detroit's financial woes.

"It's surprising to be lumped into the same category of creditors and banks," Elmir said. "That's a first for us."













Family of Detroit officer killed by estranged husband sues city, police
By The Associated Press
MLive
March 14, 2011 at 7:13 AM
Updated March 14, 2011 at 7:16 AM
http://www.mlive.com/news/detroit/index.ssf/2011/03/family_of_detroit_officer_kill.html


The family of a Detroit police officer killed by her estranged husband is suing the city, alleging officials scuttled an investigation that could have prevented her death. 

The 22-page wrongful death lawsuit seeking unspecified damages also accuses two Detroit sergeants of protecting 36-year-old homicide detective Ed Williams from possible criminal prosecution following reports he had assaulted 33-year-old Patricia Williams in the days before she was fatally shot in September 2009. Ed Williams also fatally shot himself.

The suit filed in U.S. District Court in Detroit says the last three days of their lives included domestic violence and a statewide alert prompted by Ed Williams' suspected suicide note. The suit claims a Detroit police sergeant convinced Canton Township police to cancel the alert.

City officials declined comment to The Detroit News.