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Former mayor facing possession charges

The former mayor of Birmingham, Michigan, is facing drug charges after he was accused of possessing methamphetamine. The man, age 53, is facing a 10-year felony charge in connection with the case, which was initiated when he was arraigned on Aug. 28. Community members say they are shocked by the allegations, as the man has been active in the local community for decades.

Official reports show that the man was arrested after a raid by a drug task force in the area, the members of which had purchased methamphetamine from two individuals in Bloomfield Township. The man is said to have sold the undercover officer about $100 worth of the drug, though he is not facing any narcotics distribution or trafficking charges. Inside the home, officers said they found more methamphetamine, some marijuana, several syringes and a modest amount of cash.

The man in this case is notable because he served as an area commissioner; those government leaders rotate the position of mayor each year. During his term, the man became the first openly gay mayor of Birmingham and also the first Jewish mayor. The man also served on the library board for Birmingham after he lost several elections to be reinstated to the commissioner position. In addition, the man had served as an important role model in the town by coaching figure skating. He provided initial instruction for a pair of Olympic silver medalists.

Authorities in the area say that meth usage has spiked dramatically in the past several years in the area, with more people falling victim to the drug than ever before. The compound is remarkably addictive, according to these officials, who are taking drastic measures to reduce its usage throughout the region. Even though the community member in this case may have been an upstanding citizen, he could also be considered a victim. This man deserves all relevant legal protection and a fair legal proceeding in connection with the charges.

Source: www.freep.com, "Former Birmingham mayor accused of possessing meth, ecstasy" Bill Laitner & Jerry Grossman, Sep. 10, 2013

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