The focus of the probe is Judge Kathryn George, who was removed as the probate court’s chief judge in January 2008 after it was revealed she was circumventing the court’s list of conservators and appointing an inordinate number of cases to one agency, Shelby Township-based ADDMS Guardianship Services.
The Detroit News in 2007 reported that George was sending most of her conservatorship cases to ADDMS, in violation of court rules requiring judges to use a rotation of several conservatorship agencies.
Now, Judicial Tenure Commission investigators are poring over court records, looking at cases handled by George, along with her attendance record, said Macomb Chief Probate Judge Kenneth Sanborn.
The probe marks at least the second time state court officials have investigated George, 58, a former registered nurse and Sterling Heights city councilwoman who has served on the bench since 2002.
In February 2008, the State Court Administrator’s Office commissioned Auburn Hills-based auditor The Whall Group to look into George’s handling of cases, along with allegations of excessive absences.
The audit found “flagrant violations” by ADDMS. The audit highlighted several cases in which the agency mishandled the estates of people it was charged to care for, including selling the assets of an 82-year-old man who was recovering from pneumonia in a nursing home.
The Whall Group found that ADDMS sold the entire contents of his home, “including furnishings, appliances, clothing and two vintage automobiles.”
In January 2008, after the Whall Group report was published, Carl Gromek, chief of staff of the State Court Administrator’s Office, removed George as the court’s chief judge, and ADDMS was barred from handling cases.
Seven months later, Sanborn signed an administrative order removing George from all cases involving wills and estates.
Full Article and Source:
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