U.P. judge facing possible suspension

SAULT STE. MARIE — A judge in the eastern U.P. could be facing suspension.

Documents from the Michigan Judicial Tenure Commission show that a 120-day suspension without pay has been recommended for Judge Elizabeth Church. Church presides over the Chippewa County District and Probate Courts.

The commission found that she reduced or dismissed charges or modified sentences in at least twenty criminal cases – and that she had dismissed at least thirty-two tickets – without holding hearings. A settlement agreement shows that Church agreed to public censure and the suspension.

The commission’s recommendation is currently pending before the Michigan Supreme Court.