Royal Oak doctor charged with threatening prosecutor

Mike Martindale
The Detroit News

Royal Oak — A family physician who operates a medical marijuana clinic in Oakland County is jailed on charges he made Internet threats last weekend to kill Oakland County prosecutor Jessica Cooper, two assistant prosecuting attorneys and others.

Dr. Kumar A. Singh of Royal Oak was arrested last Sunday after two of his targeted victims made police reports after learning of the threats allegedly made by Singh on Facebook on Sept. 10. He was arraigned on 22 charges Wednesday and is being held in the Oakland County Jail in lieu of $1 million bond.

Singh, 47, allegedly made various threats to kill with an assault rifle several individuals including prosecutors, judges, attorneys, bailiffs and others as a result of what he perceives to be mistreatment in a criminal case from 2013-14 in Oakland County. He claimed the case “severely tarnished his reputation,” according to John Potbury, a spokesman of the Genesee County Prosecutor’s Office, which will be handling the case because Cooper has recused herself.

“He was apparently a witness in a criminal case a few years ago,” Potbury said. “He was cross-examined by an assistant prosecutor. That assistant prosecutor didn’t have any subsequent conversations that he can recall.

“So the big question is why after all these years did his (Singh’s) wrath and anger come out? A search warrant was issued and evidence found that indicates he had the ability to carry out the threats.”

Potbury did not elaborate on what was found in Singh’s residence other than weapons.

Cooper’s chief deputy, Paul Walton, said several of those who allegedly received Facebook threats, texts or telephone calls from Singh had contacted local police agencies with concerns.

“We don’t know a lot about him (Singh) other than he was cross-examined during a medical marijuana case trial a few years and there wasn’t anything unusual about that,” Walton said. “If there had been, you would assume someone would have filed with the attorney grievance commission or written a letter ... nothing. Until a few days ago.”

In a statement, Cooper thanked the police agencies involved, led by the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office, in the way they handled a potentially dangerous situation.

Singh was represented in court Wednesday by Matthew Abel of Cannabis Counsel, a group which specializes in marijuana cases in Michigan.

“It’s a strange case but he claims he is innocent of the charges — that he didn’t threaten anyone,” Abel said. “I haven’t had the opportunity to talk to him much about the case but I expect we will be meeting.”

Abel said Singh was subpoenaed to testify in a medical marijuana case “a few years back” and it was his understanding that Singh felt questioning of him by the prosecution went too far.

“The judge at the time — Rudy Nichols — should have appointed a lawyer for him (Singh),” Abel said. “If he was angry about anything this didn’t just come out of the blue. There were reasons. He was harassed in court.”

Singh was reportedly so angered at an assistant prosecutor he perceived as discrediting him during a 2013 medical marijuana case that he sent threat to the assistant prosecutor’s sister and her children.

The charges include offenses in the threat of terrorism, including use of the internet to make the threats, use of a computer to make threats and use of a computer to commit a crime. All of the computer crimes are punishable by 20 years in prison. He was also charged with four counts of ethnic intimidation, a felony with a two-year prison penalty.

Royal Oak police staked out Singh’s apartment in Royal Oak and arrested him without incident Sunday, according to Potbury.

An AR-15 rifle was found in Singh’s apartment in July. It was not immediately known if that weapon had been returned to him after the earlier incident in which neighbors reported hearing gunfire from Singh’s apartment.

Abel said the July disorderly charge involved an incident in which Singh was cleaning a firearm and it accidentally went off.

“It was an accident and he pled guilty to a charge and its my understanding that he turned over firearms to police,” Abel said.

According to Royal Oak District Court records. Singh pleaded guilty Sept. 7 to a misdemeanor offense involving discharge of a firearm July 15. He was assessed a $885 fine and placed on one year of probation. He is now in violation of his probation and that will be subject of review Sept. 27 when he is scheduled back before District Judge Jamie Wittenberg for a probable cause hearing on the threats.

Royal Oak police did not return calls Wednesday.

Singh’s case comes on the heels of five men being arrested in Detroit for allegedly threatening or denigrating police on social media. Last month, Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy decided not to criminally charge three men and the case against the fourth man is still being investigated. No decision has been made on charges in the fifth case.

In 2009, Singh established the Greenlite Clinic, a state licensed medical office and walk-in clinic on Maple in Troy that prescribes medical marijuana certifications to qualified patients.

mmartindale@detroitnews.com

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