“INVESTIGATIVE SUBPOENA” LAW GAVE THE POWER TO PROSECUTORS AND JUDGES
by Sharon Rondeau
Michigan became part of the United States in 1837Oct. 30, 2010 — During the last several months, The Post & Email has been focusing on the absence or corruption of grand juries at the county and state level throughout the country. Here a resident of the state of Michigan describes how he attempted to obtain a grand jury hearing in 2009 and discovered that there had not been a grand jury convened in his county for more than a decade due to the passage of the “Investigative Subpoena” statute by the Michigan legislature in 1996.An article from a 2002 Michigan Law Review provides a description of the Investigative Subpoena statute’s purpose and function as compared to the “grand jury” method of investigation:…Michigan does have some archaic grand jury statutes still on the books-statutes which are rarely utilized because they are cumbersome, expensive and require extensive judicial involvement.
However, in 1995, the Michigan Legislature passes [sic] the Investigational Subpoena law that became effective on January 1, 1996. This law has given prosecutors and police a tremendous new ability to solve some of the most difficult crimes, by expanding their pre-charging powers, while retaining many of the protections of the old grand jury laws, insuring both judicial scrutiny, and individual rights.