Appellate judge pleads guilty, in private, in airport gun-possession case

A Michigan Appeals Court judge waived arraignment and pleaded guilty Tuesday, in private, to a misdemeanor gun-possession charge.

It concerned the loaded handgun reportedly found by Detroit Metropolitan Airport security screeners last month in the carry-on luggage of Judge Henry William Saad.

The Wayne County prosecutor’s office said in a written statement that it had pushed for Saad’s guilty plea to be made in open court rather than chambers of Judge Tina Brooks Green, the Detroit News reports. She is the chief judge of the 34th District Court in Romulus.

However, Green contradicted the prosecutor’s office claim that the plea took place in her chambers, contending that it was made at another courthouse location, the Detroit Free Pressreports.

Asked by the newspaper whether Green received special consideration in being allowed to plead guilty in private, Green said “absolutely not,” explaining that such a “plea by mail” is routine in airport security cases.

“It’s not the crime of the century, and it’s standard practice,” she told the newspaper.

Saad pleaded guilty to possessing a firearm in a sterile area, the Free Press says, and he was ordered to pay a $750 fine. However, sentencing was deferred for 90 days and the case apparently will be dismissed if the judge avoids further trouble during that period.

via ABA

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