Appeals Court OKs Meningitis Grand Jury

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LANSING, Mich. (AP) -- The Michigan appeals court has approved a request for a grand jury to investigate a company linked to a deadly meningitis outbreak.

Attorney General Bill Schuette wants to know if New England Compounding Center of Massachusetts broke any Michigan laws is distributing tainted steroids to clinics in four counties last year.

At least 19 Michigan residents have died and 262 have been infected with fungal meningitis or other illnesses. Schuette says the numbers are the highest in the country.

Livingston County Judge David Reader will oversee the grand jury, whose members will come from Livingston, Grand Traverse, Genesee and Macomb counties. The investigation will determine if criminal charges should be pursued.

Appeals Court Judge Douglas Shapiro objected, saying Schuette failed to present enough evidence to justify a grand jury.