Roseville judge charged in hit-and-run crash

Judge Catherine Steenland at 39th District Court in Roseville, May 4, 2017.

A Macomb County judge was charged Thursday in connection with a hit-and-run car collision last year.

 Judge Catherine Steenland of 39th District Court in Roseville was charged with two misdemeanors for an incident that occurred at 8:30 p.m. Sept. 25 near McKinnon Street in Roseville.

A 31-year-old Roseville man told police his car was struck by a red sedan driven by a woman who drove away. The man provided officers with the car's license plate number and a description of the incident. Other people also saw the incident, according to the Wayne County Prosecutor's Office.

Steenland, 51, was identified as the suspected driver following an investigation by the Michigan State Police.

Arrangements are being made for Steenland to turn herself in to be processed. The judge has been charged with one count of failure to stop at the scene of a personal injury accident, a one-year misdemeanor and failure to report an accident, a 90-day misdemeanor.

The Wayne County Prosecutor's Office said it would release the arraignment date for the judge's case when it receives it.

"The alleged actions of this judge are disturbing," Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy said. "A judge is the ultimate example of one who should be held to the highest standards of the law.”

The Steenland case was referred to the Wayne County Prosecutor's Office Jan. 19. by the Michigan Attorney General's Office after Macomb County Prosecutor Eric Smith recused his office from the case. 

The Wayne County Prosecutor's Office requested an investigation from the Michigan State Police "that was necessary to the review of the case, and to make a charging decision," according to a release from Worthy's office.

Steenland's fellow judges in 39th District Court have disqualified themselves from presiding over her arraignment. The State Court Administrative Office, by blind draw on Thursday, assigned Judge Michael L. Helewicz of 72nd District Court to arraign Steenland. 

The arraignment will be Friday at the courthouse in Port Huron; a time had not been set as of Thursday.

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