Advance Notice: Briefs

Redistricting commission postpones meeting due to death threat

By: - October 27, 2021 2:34 pm

The Michigan Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission holds a public hearing in Lansing. Photo by Anna Gustafson

Updated, 4:59 p.m., 10/27/21 with comment from Michigan State Police, Michigan State University

A Michigan Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission (MICRC) meeting Wednesday was postponed after the commission received a death threat, according to spokesperson Edward Woods. 

At 1:06 p.m. today, the Michigan Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission received notification of a death threat received through email. We alerted law enforcement and they opened an investigation. As of now, the Commission meeting is suspended until further notice,” Woods said. 

The 13-member panel, composed of four Republicans, four Democrats and five independents, was formed after voters passed a 2018 state constitutional measure. 

Michigan State University Police and Public Safety Inspector Chris Rozman said the email was sent Tuesday, but wasn’t opened until Wednesday.

It is unclear whether the threat was directed at specific members or toward the commission as a whole. When asked, Woods did not clarify. 

“The MSU Police Department was contacted, and extra patrols were scheduled. The Michigan Department of State is requesting that this matter be further investigated by the [Michigan State Police]. This investigation is in the preliminary stages and is an active investigation. At this time there is no threat to the public,” said Lt. Brian Oleksyk, Michigan State Police spokesperson.

The meeting, which was postponed until around 3:20 p.m. Wednesday, is the first meeting to discuss the redistricting maps since the second round of public comment hearings ended Friday. 

The meeting is at the Michigan State University Union in East Lansing. 

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Allison R. Donahue
Allison R. Donahue

Allison R. Donahue covers education, women's issues and LGBTQ issues. Previously, she was a suburbs reporter at the St. Cloud Times in St. Cloud, Minn., covering local education and government. As a graduate of Grand Valley State University, she has previous experience as a freelance researcher for USA Today and an intern with WOOD TV-8. When she is away from her desk, she spends her time going to concerts, comedy shows or getting lost on hikes in different places around the world.