In lieu of granting leave to appeal in People v. Mack, the Michigan Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the Court of Appeals in a 4-3 decision. In a memorandum opinion, the majority held that the legislatively created rule of evidence, MCL 768.27b, which addresses the admissibility of evidence in domestic-violence cases that a defendant has committed other acts of domestic violence, did not infringe on the Michigan Supreme Court’s constitutional authority to establish the rules of “practice and procedure in all courts of this state.” The majority determined that the statute did not infringe on the Court’s authority even though in certain instances the statute expands the admissibility of evidence beyond the scope permitted by MRE 404(b)(1). The majority held that the reasoning of People v. Watkins, 491 Mich 450; 818 NW2d 296 (2012), which addressed a similar statute, MCL 768.27a, regarding the admissibility of evidence that a defendant accused of certain sexual offenses against a minor has committed other sexual offenses against a minor, fully controls in this case.
In a dissenting opinion, Justice Marilyn Kelly, joined by Justices Cavanagh and Hathaway, disagreed with the majority’s conclusion, reasoning that because the statute conflicts with MRE 404(b) and regulates a matter of procedure, that the Legislature “overstepped its constitutional authority when enacting it.” The dissent concluded that the statute is unconstitutional and violated the separation of powers. The dissent would grant leave to appeal to reconsider Watkins.