A censured Royal Oak city commissioner pleaded guilty Wednesday in a misdemeanor shoplifting case from May.
Kim Gibbs pleaded guilty to third-degree retail fraud, a misdemeanor, during an arraignment and pretrial in 45th District Court in Oak Park, according to the court.
The matter was referred to probation for a pre-sentence investigation. Gibbs’ next court date has not been set, according to court representatives. The case was before Judge Michelle Appel.
Gibbs’ attorney, Derrick George, said in an email to the Free Press: “We have no comment at this time on Ms. Gibbs’ pending legal matter.”
The case was transferred to 45th District Court after the judges in 44th District Court in Royal Oak recused themselves from the case May 15, the Royal Oak district court said last month.
Royal Oak Police Chief Corrigan O’Donohue said in May that loss prevention personnel at the Meijer on Coolidge Highway detained Gibbs on her way out of the store and called police.
He said Gibbs had taken items through self-scan. He said she paid for about $45 worth of items and took about $95 worth. She was ticketed for third-degree retail fraud.
Gibbs, a lawyer, was censured in April by the City Commission after she attended the April 15 “Operation Gridlock” rally in Lansing, where she was seen on TV without a face mask and not keeping social distance.
The rally protested Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s extension of her stay-at-home order to stem the spread of COVID-19.
After the shoplifting incident, Gibbs issued a statement apologizing to family, friends and constituents for “my substantial lapse in judgement.” She said a combination of many external factors led to her “poor judgement” and that the economic impact of the COVID-19 statewide lockdown took a serious toll on her.
“I obviously was not thinking clearly, and I take full responsibility for my actions. Recently, I had to choose between insulin and food, and I chose the insulin, which helps me stay alive,” she said in the statement.
“Recent threats and harassment along with censure in Royal Oak for my attendance at ‘Operation Gridlock’ and a lack of sleep have resulted in my mistake. Thanks to the support of family and friends, I am now seeking treatment from medical professionals to ensure I never make a mistake like this again.”
Gibbs is a Republican candidate for Oakland County commissioner in November, vying for the seat held by Chairman Dave Woodward, a Democrat.
Contact Christina Hall: [email protected] Follow her on Twitter: @challreporter.