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Attorney’s contempt charges asked to be dismissed

Len Painter • Jul 21, 2015 at 11:17 AM

The American Civil Liberties Union, Ottawa County Bar Association, Criminal Defense Attorneys of Michigan and the law firm of Miel & Carr of Stanton — for which Millard works — are collectively asking Judge Edward Post to overturn the charges.

The court briefs contend that Judge Kenneth Post — who presides over the Ottawa County 58th District Court in Hudsonville — was wrong to order Millard to jail on Dec. 2 for advising his client to use the Fifth Amendment in answering questions from the judge.

In the Miel & Carr brief, it stated: “At best, Judge (Kenneth) Post’s conduct was a reckless misuse of the power of contempt. At worst, Judge Post exhibited an abusive display of judicial power aimed at intimidating a novice attorney into abandoning, on demand, his duty zealously to defend his present and future clients’ constitutional rights.”

The brief also stated: “In using the contempt power to prevent Mr. Millard from performing his duties as attorney, Judge (Kenneth) Post has created a chilling effect on the ability of attorneys in his courtroom to zealously advocate for their clients.”

The name of Millard’s client has not been released.

The dispute surfaced at a District Court arraignment for Millard’s client when Judge Kenneth Post began asking Millard’s client — who was facing the charge of minor in possession of alcohol — if he would pass a drug test. Millard, according to court documents, instructed his client to exercise his Fifth Amendment right and remain silent.

The date for the hearing before Judge Edward Post has not been set.

To read more of this story, see today’s print or e-edition of the Grand Haven Tribune.

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