Going against his attorney’s wishes, Vanduinen said he will testify in circuit court case

News Photo by Temi Fadayomi Thomas Vanduinen sits next to his attorney Michael Behan during his trial on Wednesday.

ALPENA — Thomas Vanduinen, against the wishes of his attorney, said on Wednesday that he plans to testify on Thursday in his circuit court case after the prosecution calls up the last of its witnesses as day two of his trial comes to an end.

Vanduinen is facing three counts of false report of a felony, one count of lying to a peace officer, and one count of using a computer to commit a crime for allegedly false statements made to the Michigan State Police’s Professional Standards Office in regard to the validity and findings of MSP’s seizure of his property during an investigation into other cases involving Vanduinen.

Before the trial adjourned on Wednesday, while the jury was on recces, Vanduinen’s attorney Michael Behan took the stand to request that the case be dismissed.

His request was denied by Circuit Court Judge Ed Black.

Afterward, Behan then informed the court that he had told Vanduinen of the risk that comes with testifying given his other pending court cases and despite this information, Vanduinen had made it clear to Behan that he still planned to testify.

“I have advised my client of the risks for him in testifying,” said Behan. “Specifically, the fact that there are two other ongoing cases that have serious charges to them. He is obviously aware of those and that I do not represent him in those cases, and I have given him my opinion relative to the risk that he runs in testifying, and is my understanding from my discussions with Mr. Vanduinen that he would like to testify, and I would like to have him, on the record, indicate that I have advised him of the risks, but that he can make his decision one way or the other.”

Prior to Behan’s statement, the prosecution brought out several witnesses with the MSP who through their testimony argued that several complaints Vanduinen had made regarding their conduct during their searches of his property, were knowingly false.

Temi Fadayomi can be reached at 989-358-5693 or tfadayomi@thealpenanews.com.


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