News

Pro Bono Client Henry Hill to be Released After 35 Years Behind Bars

Henry Hill, who was 16 years-old when convicted of homicide in 1980, will be freed later this summer. Hill has served over 35 years of a mandatory life sentence in Michigan prisons. The decision was handed down in early May by Judge Darnell Jackson in Hill's Saginaw Circuit Court resentencing hearing. Firm attorneys Michael and Peggy Pitt and Ann Arbor attorney Deborah LaBelle are part of a collective pro bono initiative which provided representation for Hill as he sought resentencing. Hill has spent nearly four decades behind bars for his role in the 1980 shooting murder of Anthony Thomas in Saginaw. The Juvenile Life Without Parole Initiative is a statewide pro bono effort by the State Appellate Defenders Office, American Civil Liberties Union and private firms and attorneys to represent and win resentencing hearings for Michigan's 250+ juvenile lifers still serving mandatory sentences. The mandatory life sentences without parole were ruled to be unconstitutional by the U.S. Supreme Court in the 2012 Miller vs. Alabama decision. "Henry Hill has done great work rehabilitating himself and has finally earned a second chance in life," said Pitt. "He is a completely different person than the one who entered prison many years ago." Hill's case is noteworthy because it was determined that he had the mental maturity of a 9-year-old at the time the crime was committed. Despite this, Hill was still sentenced to life without parole as an accomplice to the murder. Cary McGehee, the firm's other co-founding partner, is also part of the Juvenile Life Without Parole legal effort. She is representing convicted juvenile offender Barbara Hernandez. Hernandez is seeking resentencing after serving 25 years for her role in a 1980 homicide committed when she was 16 years old. See media coverage of Henry Hill's resentencing hearing at: Fox 66 News/Flint-Saginaw-Bay City ("Judge: Saginaw Man Originally Sentenced to Life Without Parole to be Free This Summer"/2:13) http://bit.ly/2qbgpaj WNEM/CBS/Saginaw-Flint ("Man Convicted of Murder as Juvenile Re-Sentenced"/2:11) http://bit.ly/2qOAWxP

Free Press Looks at UIA Data Glitch and Cites Lord

From the Detroit Free Press LANSING — Records obtained by the Free Press point to a major glitch in importing data into a $47-million computer system the Unemployment Insurance Agency used to detect claimant fraud, meaning the system often...

WSWS Covers UIA Decision and Shares Lord Reaction

A three-judge panel in the Michigan Appeals Court dismissed a class-action lawsuit filed on behalf of Michigan workers falsely accused of civil fraud in the notorious Michigan Unemployment Insurance Agency (UIA) “robo-fraud” scandal. In the July...

Free Press, News Bloomberg Cover UIA Fraud Decision

From the Detroit News Lansing — The Michigan Talent Investment Agency is asking district court judges to dismiss 186 bench warrants issued against residents who were accused of unemployment fraud and failed to appear in court to face...

Fox 17 Features Lord in UIA Update Story

MICHIGAN -- A court hearing is scheduled Friday in Detroit for a class-action lawsuit against the Unemployment Insurance Agency. Three judges in the Court of Appeals are tasked with deciding whether the case moves forward. Regardless of the outcome,...

Legal News Covers Robin Wagner's Arrival at PMP&R

From the Legal News Robin Wagner has joined Royal Oak, Mich. law firm Pitt McGehee Palmer & Rivers. The announcement was made by firm co-founding partner Cary McGehee. “We’re pleased to announce that Robin has joined our law firm,” said...

Robin Wagner Joins PMP&R as Associate

The firm is pleased to announce that Robin Wagner has joined our firm as an associate. Before joining the firm, Robin served as a law clerk for the Hon. Judith E. Levy of the Eastern District of Michigan. And prior to clerking for Judge Levy, Robin...