Planning commission in mid-Michigan rejects housing migrants
ALMA, Mich. (AP) — The planning commission in a central Michigan community is opposed to a zoning change that would turn a former nursing home into temporary housing for boys who cross the U.S. border. Planning commissioners in Alma recommended Wednesday that the request be denied. The Alma City Commission will make the final decision. Bethany Christian Services wants to lease Warwick Living Center to provide temporary housing for boys who crossed the southern U.S. border without parents or guardians. The proposal has caused tension in Alma. Hundreds of people attended a public hearing.
Court extends intimidation crime to transgender victims
DETROIT (AP) — A Michigan law that prohibits intimidation based on gender covers people who are transgender. That's the opinion of the state Court of Appeals. The court ruled in the case of a transgender woman who was shot after being confronted by a man at a Detroit gas station. Michigan’s ethnic intimidation law makes it a crime to maliciously harass another person because of race, color, religion, gender or national origin. The court reinstated an ethnic intimidation charge against Deonton Rogers. Prosecutor Kym Worthy says it's a "huge win for the protection of the transgender community."
Ascension Michigan to pay $2.8M to feds over hysterectomies
SOUTHFIELD, Mich. (AP) — A Michigan health care provider has agreed to pay $2.8 million to the federal government to settle allegations that a doctor performed unnecessary hysterectomies and other services. The deal settles claims of false billings made by Ascension Michigan to Medicare, Medicaid and another federal insurance program. The doctor’s name wasn’t disclosed. Over a six-year period, the government says radical hysterectomies were performed on women when only a simple hysterectomy was necessary. A hysterectomy is the removal of the uterus. Three people who blew the whistle on Ascension Michigan will share $532,000.
Michigan vaccinations rise again; masks in school urged
LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Michigan’s weekly number of people getting an initial COVID-19 shot has risen for the third straight week after having consistently dropped for two months. The increase coincided with the spread of the delta variant — the most contagious coronavirus mutant yet — and a $5 million state sweepstakes designed to incentivize vaccinations. There were about 41,000 first-dose immunizations last week, the most since the week of June 13-19. The state health department on Wednesday advised schools to require masks but stopped short of mandating it. The guidance aligns with recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Federal agency OKs $29M for flood-hit Detroit residents
DETROIT (AP) — The Federal Emergency Management Agency has so far approved about $29 million in grants for Detroit residents whose homes and property were damaged by heavy flooding during a late June storm. Mayor Mike Duggan says FEMA teams were in Detroit neighborhoods Wednesday speaking with residents and business owners about how to file claims. The storm dumped more than 6 inches of rain on Detroit and three suburban communities June 25-26, leaving thousands of basements and dozens of streets flooded. In mid-July, President Joe Biden approved a disaster declaration that made federal grants and low-cost loans available to residents and business owners.
3 in fatal Michigan rock-throwing case get probation
FLINT, Mich. (AP) — Three young Michigan men have been placed on probation for a rock-throwing incident that killed a motorist on Interstate 75. The three already had spent more than three years in custody while their case was stuck in court. Ken White was struck in 2017 by a rock thrown from an overpass in Genesee County, near Flint. White was a passenger in a van. Mark Sekelsky, Trevor Gray and Mikadyn Payne were teens when the incident happened, and their case lasted years because of a dispute over whether they would be treated as juveniles or adults. The person accused of actually throwing the rock pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in 2019 and was sentenced to 39 months in prison.
Judge rebukes Jan. 6 defendant, sentences him to time served
A Michigan man who called Jan. 6 the “best day ever” is being released from jail after pleading guilty to a misdemeanor charge in the riot at the U.S. Capitol. U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson told Karl Dresch he was an “enthusiastic participant” in an effort to subvert the will of the voters. Dresch is being released from jail since he has already served the six-month maximum sentence for the misdemeanor offense. Later Wednesday, two other Jan. 6 defendants were also sentenced, and avoided jail time. Jessica Bustle was ordered to serve two months in home confinement and her husband Joshua Bustle received one month home confinement.
Former basketball star Tony Tolbert dies, had COVID-19
DETROIT (AP) — Tony Tolbert, a former Michigan high school basketball star who played at two Michigan universities, has died at age 50. Friends and family say Tolbert was recently diagnosed with COVID-19 after not getting the vaccination. He died Monday. Tolbert played basketball at Michigan after an extraordinary career at St. Martin DePorres High School. He transferred to Detroit Mercy and played two seasons there, leading the Titans in scoring both times. Despite playing only two seasons, Tolbert was 16th on Detroit Mercy’s all-time scoring list when he finished his college career.
Jail officer, inmates became ill after someone spiked water
FLINT, Mich. (AP) — An officer and a few inmates at a Flint-area jail became sick when a pot of water was spiked by other inmates. The substance was described only as a “non-narcotic.” The incident at the Genesee County jail occurred last weekend. Sheriff Chris Swanson says the pot is typically used by inmates to heat water for noodles. A deputy also used the hot water. Everyone has recovered. After looking at video, investigators believe they know who spiked the water. A report will be given to prosecutors.
GM posts $2.8B profit, but cautious tone sinks share price
DETROIT (AP) — General Motors posted a healthy $2.8 billion second-quarter profit Wednesday, but its cautious outlook for the rest of the year spooked investors. The Detroit automaker made the strong profit despite a global shortage of computer chips that have forced it and other companies to temporarily close factories. While the GM raised its outlook for the year, it also cautioned about high commodity prices and lower production due to the chip shortage. And it warned that the highly contagious delta variant of the coronavirus could hamper its supply chain. The cautious tone rattled investors, who pushed GM shares down almost 9%.