Today: Chance of snow,
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Tomorrow: Chance of
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One hundred four years of editorial freedom
February 3, 1995
'Attorney for suspected
By Frank C. Lee
Daily Staff Reporter
The -defense for a suspected serial rapist,
filed several motions yesterday contesting the
way the Ann Arbor police investigation was
conducted and the prosecutor's actions.
Ervin D. Mitchell Jr., 33, remains in
ashtenaw County Jail under $50,000 bond
awaiting a Feb. 27 trial in Washtenaw County
Circuit Court. He is charged for a Dec. 24,
unarmed robbery and assault.
Washtenaw County Assistant Public De-
fender David Lankford, Mitchell's attorney,
filed eight motions at the Washtenaw County
Courthouse yesterday. The pretrial motions
will be heard in Circuit Court Feb. 16.
Lankford moved to suppress the introduc-
tion of a white, bloody glove allegedly used in
the purse-snatching attempt and the testimony
of a state police crime lab DNA scientist. The
defense based the motion on discrepancies be-
tween the description of the attacker given by
the victim and Mitchell's actual appearance.
Mitchell, about 6feet 3 inches tallandweigh-
ing about 200 pounds, was wearing white tennis
shoes, dark dress pants and a coat with no hood
at the time of his arrest. The victim described her
attacker as about 5 feet 10 inches tall and weigh-
ing 180 pounds, wearing black tennis shoes,
dark sweat pants and a hooded coat.
Based on these discrepancies, the defense
contends Mitchell was unjustly arrested and
searched so any evidence should be suppressed.
"We will oppose that motion," said Brian
Mackie, Washtenaw County's chief prosecut-
ing attorney. "We think the evidence was
properly obtained and we'll leave that to the
judge to decide."
Mitchell's attorney also contends there was
insufficient evidence at the preliminary exami-
nation to allow the judge to find probable cause
that the robbery and assault was committed.
"That goes to the sufficiency of the evi-
dence at the preliminary examination," Mackie
said. "We believe the district court judge who
heard the examination was correct in her
decision, so we will oppose that."
The defense moved to suppress evidence
and test results from Mitchell's blood samples.
Lankford states that the robbery victim was
weither sexually assaulted nor linked to the
files pretrial motions
Ann Arbor rapes, and therefore the police
were unjustified in drawing the blood.
In accordance with a Dec. 26 search war-
rant, two vials of Mitchell's blood were drawn
and 20 of his hairs were seized. At the prelimi-
nary hearing last month, police said the blood
samples were taken to compare with blood
found on a glove allegedly used in the Christ-
mas Day robbery attempt. Preliminary DNA
results matched Mitchell's blood samples to
semen recovered from four of the five women
raped in Ann Arbor by a serial rapist. The
attacks spanned a 2 1/2-year period, with the
last assault occurring Oct 13.
Lankford wants the county to hire an inde-
pendent expert to test the blood samples and
But Mackie said, "Even if they hire an
expert, that doesn't mean the person will
The public defender also asked the judge to
move the purse-snatching trial out ofWashtenaw
County over concerns of pretrial publicity -
compromising Mitchell's right to a fair trial.
"That motion is often filed in high-profile
cases and that have received a great deal of
media attention - seldom granted," Mackie
said. "The judge may well - under cae law
in Michigan - reserve a final ruling until an
attempt is made to seat a jury here, then decide
if there is a problem or not."
Prosecutors are awaiting test results from
more DNA comparisons before issuing war-
rants against Mitchell for sexual assault.
I 1 story
Souljah tells life story
at Border's Bookstore
plan may give
tuition tax cuts
By Eugene Bowen
Daily Staff Reporter
Sister Souljah told a packed crowd
at Border's Bookstore last night that
her life story is neither shocking nor
In her book, she wrote: "I never said
I was an angel. Nor am I innocent or
holy like the Virgin Mary. What I am is
and serious and as sensitive as
!open nerve on an ice cube."
Thus she wrote in her recently pub-
lished autobiography, "No Disrespect."
This was also the attitude that the ac-
tivist/rapper/author portrayed to the
crowd of 200lastnight when she spoke
as part of Black History Month.
Souljah, whose fame originally
sprouted from her 1992 rap album
"360 Degrees of Power," spoke on a
*ide variety of topics affecting both
Blacks in America and the American
system as a whole.
Souljah lived her younger years in
the Bronx ghettos, and in her later life
attended mostly-white schools in New
Jersey. She attends Rutgers Univer-
sity, where she needs nine more cred-
its to graduate with dual degrees in
American history and African stud-
s. Souljah is married with a son. Her
life, as inspired by these and other
experiences, is the cornerstone of "No
Disrespect," a memoir meant to ex-
press her principal philosophy: that "I"
should mean "we."~
"I wrote this book because I, a .
full-grown, adult, Black woman,
wanted to tell my experiences,"
Souljah said. "I have been honest, and
I hope that men and women will be
able to learn from my happinesses
Souljah was quick to warn those
who may have already stereotyped
her book based on prior experiences
with her political rap art.
"This book is not a political mani-
festo," she said. "It is more of a per-
sonal story, more like my diary. This
is a book about self-love."
However devoid her book may be
of political statements, Souljah held
back no punches in responding to
questions asked by members of the
audience. Many of her answers were
of a political nature.
In speaking on welfare reform,
Souljah conceded that she does not
support the welfare system as it is to-
day. However, Souljah said she feels
that the reforms proposed by House
Speaker Newt Gingrich and President
Clinton are devoid of much reasoning.
"I think that the whole conversa-
tion supporting ending support for
the underclass eminates from a very
See SOUUAH, Page 2
By Ronnie Glassberg
and Zachary M. Raimi
Daily Staff Reporters
A proposal to provide a tax deduc-
tion of up to $5,000 a year for college-
tuition, approved by a state Senate
committee yesterday, may place in-
creased pressure on the University to
The total plan, to cut taxes by
roughly $1.6 billion over the next five
years, passed taxation committees in
both the Senate and the House and
went to the chamber floors. Gov. John
Engler called for adoption within 30
days of announcing the plan Jan. 17.
The new school deduction was
unveiled by Senate Republicans in
the morning and approved by the Sen-
ate Finance Committee only hours
later. The panel passed one bill in the
tax-cut package last week, and the
The school bill aims at restraining
tuition rates by granting the deduc-
tion, after the first year, to students
who attend Michigan colleges or jun-
ior colleges that keep tuition increases
at or below the rate of inflation. The
first year, all college students would
be eligible for the deduction, and the
deduction would be available to pri-
vate school students.
"Families sending children to
school are tired of reading about tu-
ition increases," said Senate Majority
Leader Dick Posthumus (R-Alto).
At the University, where tuition
increased 6.9 percent last year, offi-
cials strongly criticized the proposal.
"It's the craziest thing I've ever
heard of because it forgets that the
major factor in pricing tuition is what
the state appropriation is," said Walter
Harrison, vice president for Univer-
sity relations. "If you had a healthy
state appropriation, every state uni-
versity would keep tuition at the rate
In December, Michigan State Uni-
versity promised to keep tuition in-
creases at or below the rate of infla-
tion under the condition that the state
also increases appropriations at the
rate of inflation. University President
James J. Duderstadt said at the time
that he would not make the same deal.
Regent Laurence Deitch (D-
Bloomfield Hills) said the state Sen-
ate proposal would adversely affect
the University's autonomy.
"I'm appalled by it. The (state)
constitution created independent gov-
erning boards to manage the Univer-
sity of Michigan, Michigan State,
Wayne State, and we do the best we
can in the interest of the University,"
Deitch said. "I think (Engler) would
have enough sense to veto a proposal
of this type."
Posthumus said the move would
save taxpayers about $120 million over
five years, to be added to the governor's
package of $1.5 billion in relief.
State Rep. Mary Schroer (D-Ann
Arbor) said the plan "falls apart with
U-M" because of the number of non-
residents at the University.
"On a couple of levels, it assumes
that all universities have the same
make-up of the student body," Schroer
said. "I also don't believe you should
punish the taxpayers of the state be-
cause the university regents decide to
Harrison said such a plan could
make the University more competi-
tive with private institutions from
outside Michigan. "We're pretty com-
petitive, but I think it will make it no
contest," Harrison said.
"I think we always try to keep our
tuition as low as we can. Would this
be another factor? Yes," he said.
Deitch said efforts to maintain the
University's quality force the Uni-
versity to increase tuition.
See TUITION, Page 2
Sister Souijah, an author/activist/rapper spoke at Border's Bookstore
last night as a part of Black History Month.
Smith addresses education issues at 'U'
By Spencer Dickinson
Daily Staff Reporter
In her first public appearance since
e start of the legislative session this
week, state Sen. Alma Wheeler Smith
criticized Gov. John Engler and dis-
cussed relations between the Univer-
sity and Lansing in the Michigan
League Ballroom yesterday.
Smith spoke as a part of Black
The Ann Arbor Democrat began
yspeaking about her family, espe-
'ially her father - the first Black
mayor of Ann Arbor. "He was U-M's
first Black faculty member ... and in
those days housing was segregated
and stores didn't really encourage
Blacks to come in.
"In those days, I suppose the Uni-
versity had a truly color-blind admis-
sions policy, but they had no pro-
grams to help out those minorities in
"My parents got involved in the
civil-rights movement and decided
that life would be better for us, their
kids ... just like their ancestors who
didn't know how to read but knew it
was important." Today Smith says
education is still the answer.
She said the' worst problem with
society is "that parents aren't there .
children are raising themselves." She
called on neighbors, churches and
students to fill the void left by today's
After her brief initial comments,
Smith answered questions. John
Matlock, director of the University's
Office of Academic Multicultural Ini-
tiatives, asked about the changing
nature of activism.
In response, Smith said she was
concerned that "the work and blood
of many who worked to get us here"
was being "squandered."
Smith also discussed more current
University issues. "U-M is viewed in
Lansing as one of the most arrogant
institutions in the country," she said
of her alma mater. She cited the
University's unwillingness to stick to
out-of-state student restrictions, a
perception that the administration is
See SMITH, Page 2
By Amy Klein
Daily Staff Reporter
Pledging to "bring student groups
and student government together," the
Students' Party announced yesterday
*s candidates for the president and
executive vice president positions for
the winter Michigan Student Assem-
The election will be held March
Former 'U' employees file suit
By Josh White
Daily Staff Reporter
After almost a month of fighting
the University with protests and
threats, three former Dental School
employees filed a $1 million state
lawsuit against the University last
Friday claiming their dismissals were
Director of Employee Relations
Bruce B. Pringle sent letters to the
three employees Jan. 16 in which he
reduced their original disipline from
dismissals to suspensions. The letters
stated that if the employees did not
call the University within 24 hours
for new assignments, they would be
considered to have "voluntarily re-
nltrnit-hned Attornev Genre R.
"We find i
ridiculous that the
that the three
- George B. Washington
attorney for former employees
The three employees claim that a
supervisor at the Dental School dis-
missed them due to racial discrimina-
tion and have asked the University to
Dental School supervisor acted ap-
propriately and we are prepared to
vigorously defend our actions," Baker
Washington said that he consid-
ered filing a federal lawsuit earlier in
the month but went ahead with plans
to sue the University in a state suit last
Washington also said that more
people have talked to him about cases
of racism at the University since he
took the current case.
"Five other individuals have
called me with cases of racial dis-
crimination at the University of
Michigan, which we feel were in-
spired by the dental workers' case,"
Washington asserted. "I think that
the dental workers are iust the tip of
Brinn ilintt and Finn Rose will viA for the too spots in MSA. I