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Bloomfield Hills, Mich. — Aug. 22, 2016 — Neil Rockind, founder of Bloomfield Hills-based criminal defense law firm, Rockind Law, responded harshly to news that the Michigan State Police (MSP) Crime Lab had calibration errors in more than 4000 analyzed alcohol cases statewide. Although prosecutors across the state were initially notified on July 1, 2016 by the Prosecuting Attorneys’ Association of Michigan (PAAM) of the MSP’s errors, no notification was sent to the attorneys of affected individuals until today.
Rockind, who is still learning whether any of his clients’ alcohol tests are among those with errors, became aware of the situation when Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy sent out a press release disclosing the issue and included sample letters to attorneys whose clients in Wayne County DUI cases were impacted. There appears to be some county prosecutor’s offices and prosecutors in Michigan that have not released any information at all.
“People’s lives and livelihoods are at stake here, yet the Michigan State Police intentionally delayed admitting their errors and PAAM subsequently sat on the information,” Rockind said. “I have argued for years against the rush to use what I call junk science in determining drug and alcohol cases. Now that the controlling authorities add credibility to my crusade, they go silent. It’s not right.”
Rockind said the errors call into question the reliability of other MSP results as well.
“How can we trust the accuracy of other MSP test results following this debacle? Their credibility is shot and the suppression of the information shows their interest in protecting their own, while individuals subjected to faulty test results suffer the consequences,” Rockind said. “This is going to make it very difficult for MSP technicians to testify with 100 percent assurance and authority moving forward.”
In the meantime, Rockind sees the incident as further evidence that the MSP and PAAM are too closely aligned to serve the best interests of Michigan residents.
“The relationship between the Michigan State Police and the Prosecuting Attorneys’ Association of Michigan (PAAM), which is basically a lobbying group for prosecutors, is far too cozy,” Rockind said. “The information from the MSP should have been sent directly to the affected defendants’ attorneys immediately and to all courts and judges. Instead, there was a delay in releasing the information so that additional tests could be done. This appears to be an effort by PAAM to protect the MSP and their mutually rewarding relationship, and to cover their tracks before disclosure. In other words, they tried to clean up the mess before telling us there was a mess in the first place.”
About Rockind Law
Rockind Law is a Bloomfield Hills, Michigan-based criminal defense law firm aggressively pursuing justice for individuals facing criminal charges, including white collar crime, drunk driving, narcotics and assault. To find out more about the firm’s services and resources, visit http://www.rockindlaw.com/.