Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Trial set for man accused in threats against cops, judges

A Van Buren Township man could face 20 years in prison if convicted of threatening the lives of police officers and local judges.
James Bernard Lang, 55, is charged with filing a false report or threat of terrorism and one count as a habitual offender, fourth offense, which carries a five to 15-year sentence upon conviction.
Prosecutors claim that Lang called the Van Buren Township Dispatch Center and made verbal threats on the lives of township police officers and the two sitting judges at the 34th District Court in Romulus.
According to Van Buren Township Director of Public Safety Gregory Laurain, a man who identified himself as Lang called the dispatch center several times about 3 a.m. Oct. 20. The calls, on a recorded line, were answered and witnessed by both dispatchers and supervisory personnel on duty at the time, according to officials. Lang was subsequently arrested without incident at his Haggerty subdivision home on Oct. 12.
To avoid any appearance of a conflict of interest, the case was transferred to 29th District Court in Wayne where Lang was arraigned on the charges by Judge Laura Mack. Mack ordered him held on a $100,000 or 10 percent bond and required him to wear an electronic tether if released from police custody and that he undergo mandatory alcohol testing. The case was sent to 35th District Court in Plymouth for his preliminary hearing which took place Nov. 8 before Judge James Plakas who found sufficient evidence to send him for trial.
Lang did not post bond and has remained in the Wayne County Jail awaiting his next court appearance which will be a jury trial scheduled to begin Feb. 5.