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STATE NEWS for MON 18JAN21
events are being held in Grand Rapids to mark the Martin Luther King
Junior holiday. The Urban League is hosting a virtual MLK breakfast while
there is also a Grand Rapids community celebration , which is also
virtual. With increased racial tensions in the past year, Gayle Harvey
says King said freedom is never voluntarily given to the oppressed.
A 15-thousand dollar reward is being offered after ashes of a Navy
veteran were stolen Saturday night along with a Jeep in Macomb County.
Justin Bruce's father died earlier this month in Virginia and after the
funeral, he drove his dad's Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk to his home in
Fraser. Within 45 minutes of returning, Bruce says the Jeep was stolen
from his driveway. Inside the SUV were all of his dad's belongings,
photographs, medals, and his father's cremated remains.
student was taken to the hospital for smoke inhalation last evening when
fire broke out at Ferris State University's West Campus apartments. The
university is helping students with temporary housing. The cause of the
fire is under investigation.
The Kalamazoo Department of Public Safety is asking for the public's
help for information on a house fire last night. They say the fire
occurred at the rear of the home on the first floor and firefighters
brought it under control within 25 minutes. The residents were not home at
the time of the fire and the cause is not known.
A murder investigation is occurring in Macomb County involving
the owner of a popular Italian restaurant and his wife. Charges are
expected this week against the owner of Villa Restaurant in Eastpointe.
The Macomb Daily says 55-year-old Joseph Palleschi is the suspect in his
wife's shooting death Saturday morning. Clinton Township police were
called to the couple's home around 2:40 A-M, where officers found the wife
shot dead. No motive has been released. The restaurant has been in
business since 1956. A sign on the door says the restaurant will remain
closed due to a "family tragedy."
A 38-year-old woman and her four year old daughter were injured
after they went sledding and crashed into a tree in west Michigan's Port
Sheldon Township, north of Holland. The Ottawa County Sheriff's Office
says it happened Sunday morning and the mother was taken to the hospital,
while the little girl was treated at the scene. The mother and daughter
are from St. Clair and were visiting family in the Holland area.
Three break-ins at west Michigan businesses in Ottawa county over
the weekend were probably related. WOOD TV reports that's the word from
the Ottawa County Sheriff's Office about break-ins at two Jude's
Barbershops in Allendale and the Bibles for Missions Thrift Store. Anyone
with information should call the sheriff's office or Silent Observer.
It's officially moving day for Royal Oak Police. The current police
building is mostly packed up and today, the department begins switching
over various systems to its new police headquarters on 11 Mile Rd. just
east of I-75. During the transition, some police operations such as
dispatch, prisoner holding and investigations will occur remotely at
Madison Heights and Troy police departments. Residents should not notice
any interruption in phone calls or 911 services. The lobby of the current
police station will stay open until the new station is completely up and
An estimated one in five teenagers has symptoms of a mental health
disorder such as depression or anxiety, and suicide is the second leading
cause of death among teens. But the first person a teen confides in may
not always be an adult. They may prefer to talk to another teen. And
three-quarters of parents in a new national poll think peers better
understand teen challenges, compared to teachers or counselors in the
school. The majority also agree that peer support leaders at school would
encourage more teens to talk with someone about their mental health
problems, according to the C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital National Poll on
Children’s Health at Michigan Medicine.
Michigan is gearing up to launch online gaming and internet sports
betting any day now. The Michigan Gaming Control Board expects to
authorize the launch by Tuesday. Once authorized, the board says it will
take about a week before online gaming platforms go live. Providers such
as FanDuel and DraftKings are partnering with casinos on the effort.
On-site sports betting has been offered in Michigan casinos since March.
prices in Michigan are up 15 cents compared to a week ago. Michigan
drivers are now paying an average of $2.32 per gallon for regular
unleaded, which is the highest price since early March 2020. Triple A says
drivers could see pump prices continue to climb in the coming weeks even
though gas demand remains low. The most expensive gas prices are in Ann
Arbor, Jackson and Grand Rapids, while the least expensive gas is in
Traverse City, Flint and Marquette.
STATE NEWS for FRI 15JAN21
Michigan militia group is having second thoughts about protesting outside
the State Capitol this weekend. Expected protests in Lansing on Sunday are
rumored to include the "Proud Boys", and that's causing other groups to
rethink their plans. A member of the Southeast Michigan Militia says they
don't agree with the violence at the U-S Capitol. While the group
continues to question the election and wants to make their voices heard,
the team leader says this weekend might not be the best opportunity. The
group, made up of about 217 militia members, gained attention last April
when they carried guns into the state Capitol in protest of Governor
Whitmer's stay at home order.
President-elect Joe Biden has introduced a 1-point-9 trillion dollar
plan to help the nation recover from the Coronavirus pandemic. Now
Governor Gretchen Whitmer is reacting by releasing a statement which reads
in part: "Once again, President-elect Biden has proven that he will work
around the clock to end the COVID-19 pandemic and build our economy back
better. I’m proud to have a partner in the White House who will help us
get things done for Michiganders."
wife of a former Kalamazoo pastor is facing charges for allegedly paying
teens for sex. WOOD TV reports Jazmonique (Jazz-mo-NEEQ) Strickland faces
three counts of third degree criminal sexual counts, two counts of child
sexual abusive activity and three counts of human trafficking a minor. Her
husband, Reverend Strick Strickland was arraigned last fall on similar
charges. Investigators say they used their positions in the church to
persuade four boys into having sex with Mrs. Strickland then send the
reverend nude photos between 2015 and 2018.
K-9 deputy who recently retired from the Oakland County Sheriff's Office
has died of COVID-19. The office says Mike Garrison was a top-notch
employee who brought joy to the community as a K-9 deputy, and had a deep
passion for his job. Garrison and K-9 partner Paco, a Dutch Shepherd, had
been working together since 2012. Prior to Paco, Garrison handled another
canine for eight-and-a-half years. He started his career with the
department in 1993. (Photo: Garrison)
We could find out today who will be the new sheriff in Wayne County.
Candidate interviews started yesterday and continue today to fill the
position left vacant by the death of Benny Napoleon, who died last month
from COVID-19. The appointment must be finalized by tomorrow. 14
candidates are up for the position.
STATE NEWS for THU 14JAN21
health officials reported about 27-hundred more COVID-19 cases on Thursday
and 139 deaths linked to the virus, 107 of those deaths were discovered
during a check of death certificates. In all, 13,672 people in Michigan
have died after contracting COVID-19. The 2,698 additional confirmed cases
announced Thursday bring the state’s total to 531,004 since the virus was
first detected in Michigan 10 months ago.
A DNR conservation officer is being hailed for rescuing a dog who fell off
a 100-foot cliff along the Muskegon River. The lab mix named Cody went
missing after the incident on Tuesday. Michigan DNR conservation officer
Jeff Ginn was notified on Wednesday morning and launched his patrol vessel
to search for Cody. About one hour later, Ginn located the dog, who was
cold and wet, but otherwise unharmed. Cody’s owner said Thursday that the
dog is a little sore but is expected to make a full recovery.
Grand Valley was ranked sixth nationally in its category for the number of
students who studied abroad in 2018-2019. According to the Institute of
International Education 752 GVSU students participated in a study abroad
program. Leading the master's colleges and universities category was James
Madison University, with 1,392 students. Grand Valley has been ranked in
the top 10 for number of students studying abroad 10 times during the last
19 years of the institute's reporting.
STATE NEWS for WED
former doctor in Grand Rapids has been sentenced to federal prison after
admitting he wrote illegal prescriptions for opioids. 63-year-old Richard
Piazza has been sentenced to 71 months in federal prison and three years
of supervised release. Piazza pleaded guilty last Fall to three counts of
unlawful distribution of prescription drug-controlled substances after
writing illegal prescriptions for oxycodone and hydrocodone.
(Police Photo: Piazza)
Congressman Dan Kildee, of Flint, issued a statement following reports
that former Michigan Governor Rick Snyder and other senior state officials
will face new charges related to the Flint water crisis. He says what
happened to the people of Flint is a terrible tragedy. He says Justice for
Flint families comes in many forms, including holding state officials
accountable for what they did to Flint. While he says he never prejudges
the outcome of any criminal charges, he supports the Flint water crisis
investigation following the facts, wherever they may lead. He says No one
is above the law.
congressman Fred Upton has become the fourth Republican to back the
impeachment of President Donald Trump. The House is set to vote as early
as today on impeaching Trump for a second time, after he egged on a
violent mob of supporters who marched to the Capitol and invaded it a week
ago. Upton says he would have preferred that the House censure Trump, "but
it is time to say: enough is enough." In a message put out on social media
Tuesday night, Upton says Congress must hold Trump to account and send a
clear message that our country cannot and will not tolerate any effort by
any President to impede the peaceful transfer of power from one President
to the next. Upton joins Republican Reps. Liz Cheney of Wyoming, John
Katko of New York and Adam Kinzinger of Illinois in supporting
impeachment. (Photo: Upton)
could be closer to finding out when indoor dining will resume in Michigan
bars and restaurants. The Michigan Licensed Beverage Association posted on
its Facebook page that leadership spoke with the governor's office and
expects she will have an announcement at a news conference later today.
The organization says the reopening would likely take place beginning
February 1st, giving owners time to work with supply chain and figure out
staffing, though that has yet to be confirmed. The MLBA says it will
likely include a limited capacity and a curfew.
We're done playing games. That's what Congresswoman Debbie Dingell, of
Dearborn, says about proposing one thousand dollar fines each day a member
of congress does not wear a mask on the grounds of the U.S. Capitol.
Dingell says quote, "Either have some common sense and wear a damn mask or
pay a fine. It’s not that complicated.” Dingell says many lawmakers were
held in a room during last week's attacks and several were not wearing
masks. PRISON COVID About half of the inmates in one Michigan prison have
tested positive for COVID-19. Department of Corrections spokesman Chris
Gautz tells M-Live that 774 inmates at the Saginaw Correctional Facility,
west of Saginaw, have the Coronavirus and 118 staff members do as well.
Currently, there are more than 63-hundred active cases in prisons
statewide. 133 inmates have died , including three at the Saginaw
Police are looking for two gunmen who shot a delivery driver during a
carjacking last night in Royal Oak. Police say the victim was delivering
groceries when he was approach by two black men who demanded his keys,
wallet and cell phone. The victim complied and was shot in the leg as he
ran away. The suspects fled the scene in the victim's gray Toyota Camry.
The victim was taken to the hospital for treatment. Police are still
looking for the suspects, as well as the vehicle.
700-thousand more people are in need of food in Michigan because of this
pandemic than there were before the pandemic. Dr. Phil Knight is the
executive director of the Food Bank Council of Michigan and served on the
governor's food security council, says two million people need food help
in Michigan. He says they've made 16 recommendations to the governor
including: an agreement between the state and emergency food providers to
ensure that food is available for those who are struggling.
With many struggling for food during this pandemic, a Grand Haven
Restaurant, Don Luis Mexican Bar and Grill, is offering some free meals
for those in need. WOOD TV reports co owner Alejandro Fuentes says it's
coming from the heart. They are offering free meals to those who need them
since they have received a lot of support from the community.
STATE NEWS for TUE 12JAN21
A Grand Rapids-area teacher, pregnant with her third child, was
allegedly strangled by her husband. And now, Richard Guichelaar (Gitch-uh-Lar)
appeared in Kentwood District Court to face a murder charge Monday. Bond
was set at 2 million dollars. Police say 32-year-old Amber Guichelaar (Gitch-uh-Lar)
was killed at her home on November 16th. She was a Kentwood teacher and
the mother of two children. Investigators say her husband was only the
person at home "physically capable" of causing the injuries.
The public has now weighed in to the response of the Department of
Kalamazoo Public Safety over its response to protests this past summer. In
late June, Black Lives Matter protesters were pepper sprayed and the
National Guard was activated. Then in August some said Public Safety
showed up late to a violent Proud Boys rally and made no arrests. Some
residents called it a double standard and that the different responses has
led to broken trust in the city's Black and Brown communities. A second
virtual forum will be held January 25th and an independent review should
be completed this Spring.
Dow Chemical Company in Midland is among the latest companies to say
it will no longer donate to members of Congress who voted against
certifying the results of the presidential election. This could affect
Republican Representatives Tim Walberg, Jack Bergman and Lisa McClain who
objected to electoral college votes in two states. Dow says in a news
release that the suspension will last through the next election cycle.
As Democrats work towards impeaching President Trump for a second
time, a west Michigan Republican says he's considering supporting the
move: Congressman Peter Meijer says he's strongly considering impeachment,
but there's additional information he wants to have before making that
One person has been killed in a crash in Cannon Township , northwest
of Grand Rapids, last night. Police report a car hit a tree and one person
Wayne State University is seeking volunteers for phase three of a
clinical trial for a new COVID-19 vaccine candidate manufactured by
Novavax. At least 300 volunteers are needed, especially people 65 and
older, those with underlying medical conditions, and people of racial and
ethnic groups. Two out of three people will receive injections of the
vaccine, while the remaining one-third will receive a placebo.
Participants will then be followed for 24 months post-vaccination to
monitor their health and safety. Interested volunteers should contact the
university for more information.
As the COVID-19 vaccine continues to rollout, how do you feel when
it comes to traveling this year? A new survey from The Vacationer finds
that 72 percent of the population would only feel comfortable traveling
again if they have received the vaccine, enough of the population is
vaccinated, or herd immunity is achieved. The destination also has a lot
to do with how comfortable people are. More than 56 percent of survey
respondents say they do NOT trust the vaccine enough to travel to high
risk COVID-19 areas. And 16 percent of people say they won't travel again
until society returns to pre COVID-19 life.
This might be a good week to play the lottery. The megamillions
jackpot tonight is up to 615 million dollars. Wednesday's powerball
jackpot is 550 million. The Michigan Lottery's Jake Harris says the odds
of winning the megamillion are one in 303 million and the powerball are
one in 292 million, but he says people do win.