OAKLAND CO., Mich. - A judge has dismissed the case against the Oakland County teen who was incarcerated after not doing her school work, saying she is now allowed to go free.
Citing several "in-home services" that were provided to the teen, who has gone by "Grace" in previous reports, Circuit Court Judge Mary Ellen Brennan terminated the jurisdiction over Grace, allowing her mom to retain custody.
The teen's removal from incarceration comes after the widely-reported case where a 15-year-old girl had been placed in custody after violating her probation for completing homework during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The teen's mom released a statement following the decision, stating while the process was "unfortunate and painful," it has resulted in Grace finally and permanently returning to her family."
"It has also provided insight into an otherwise obscure window into a system that requires change in order to effectively and positively impact those it is designed to serve. We will continue to work towards that change for our Grace, and the thousands of other children whose lives are touched by this system."
Weeks after Grace's story was first reported by ProPublica, a Michigan Court of Appeals granted an emergency motion for immediate release, with the condition that the girl adheres to the terms of her probation has previously set in April.
That decision effectively left the circuit court's decision moot.
First reported on July 14, the ProPublica story detailed a teenager with a learning disability and struggled to keep up with her studies while enrolled at Groves High School in Beverly Hills. She has originally be put on probation on charges of domestic violence and theft. That was back in April, by which time districts had been closed due to the virus.
After a court hearing on April 24, Grace contacted her caseworker and said she felt overwhelmed and had overslept while feeling anxious about the probation requirements, ProPublica reported. Her mom also said she was anxious and both were working on a schedule to get Grace back on track.
Five days after that, the caseworker filed a violation of probation against Grace after she had fallen back to sleep after her morning check-in.
A judge eventually sentenced Grace to juvenile detention and was led out of the room in handcuffs. She was to be held at Children's Village in Oakland County.
Weeks after the ProPublica report, a Michigan Court of Appeals granted an emergency motion for immediate release, with the condition that the girl adheres to the terms of her probation has previously set in April.