Eastern Michigan District Courts to close Monday in observance of late Judge Battani

Hani Barghouthi
The Detroit News

Detroit — The District Court for Eastern Michigan will be closed Monday in observance of late Judge Marianne O. Battani.

Battani, 77, died Thursday at her Oakland County home following a lengthy illness, 10 months after retiring from federal court. In a farewell letter to colleagues, she wrote: "It has been my great joy to work with you and to create so many friendships."

The district includes federal courthouses in Detroit, Ann Arbor, Bay City, Flint and Port Huron.

“We would close our courthouses so our judges who operate in (…) the Eastern District could take time to observe her life," said the Court's Public Information Officer David Ashenfelter. "We would especially do this for someone like Judge Battani who had a long and distinguished career on our bench.”

United States District Judge Marianne O. Battani oversees a naturalization ceremony with Detroit Tigers Jose Iglesias and Leonys Martin and other new Americans before the ball game.

Battani presided over notable cases during a four-decade career on local and federal benches, including one involving a Kentucky man who attacked U.S. Sen. Rand Paul.

From 2012-20, she oversaw a prolonged civil case involving price fixing in the auto industry that resulted in more than a $1 billion in settlements for victims of the scheme.

“Marianne was a remarkable public servant throughout her 41 years as a judge in the courts of Michigan and the United States,” U.S. District Judge David Lawson said in a statement. “Her sense of right and wrong was uncanny.

The District Court said cases originally set for Monday would be rescheduled.