Storms packing 60 mph winds hit Michigan
CANTON TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) - Severe thunderstorms have hit parts of southern Michigan, bringing 60 mile-per-hour wind gusts that knocked down trees and power lines and blacked out about 169,000 electricity customers.
The National Weather Service says winds reaching 60 mph in Wayne County's Canton Township near Detroit and in Washtenaw County's Pittsfield Township. It says a 2-foot-diameter tree fell in Redford, near Detroit.
DTE Energy Co. says 120,000 of 160,000 affected customers remained powerless Tuesday night. CMS. Energy Corp. says 3,000 of 9,000 affected customers remained out.
Flooding closed parts of some Detroit-area expressways Tuesday evening.
WXYZ-TV reported that lightning is suspected in a fire that heavily damaged an apartment in the Detroit suburb of Taylor. And WOOD-TV reports that three people sustained non-life threatening injuries when lightning struck an Ionia County garage.
Report: 12-year-old murder suspect badly bruised
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) - Court records say a 12-year-old boy charged with murder for the fatal stabbing of a 9-year-old on a Grand Rapids-area playground lived in "deplorable" conditions and had bruises all over his body.
The Grand Rapids Press (http://bit.ly/1luQzH9 ) says court filings report the 12-year-old's mother and stepfather used drugs. It says child welfare officials documented allegations against the couple while seeking custody of three other children.
Michael Connor Verkerke was at a playground in Kentwood on Aug. 4 when authorities say the older boy stabbed him in the back.
The Associated Press isn't naming the 12-year-old because of his age. He's designated as an adult in the juvenile court system, meaning he'd be sentenced as a juvenile if convicted and then resentenced as an adult once he turns 21.
LAKE DEATH-CASS COUNTY
Man, 24, dies 2 days after being pulled from lake
SILVER CREEK TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) - Authorities in southwestern Michigan say that a 24-year-old Chicago-area man has died in an Indiana hospital, two days after being pulled unconscious from a lake.
Cass County Sheriff Joseph M. Underwood Jr. says in a statement that Abdi Adan of Wheaton, Illinois, died Monday afternoon at South Bend Memorial Hospital.
Underwood says that Abdi's sister was kayaking Saturday on Dewey Lake in Silver Creek Township when she had trouble turning the boat.
The sheriff says that Abdi wasn't wearing a life preserver when he swam out to help her but then disappeared under the surface.
Underwood says onlookers were able to pull him from the water, and a helicopter took him to the hospital.
The lake is about 20 miles north of the Indiana state line.
FUNERAL HOMES CLOSED
State closes 2 funeral homes over escrow dispute
CHESANING, Mich. (AP) - State regulators say they've shut down two funeral homes in mid-Michigan and suspended the mortuary license of the owner.
The state says $162,000 from prepaid funeral contracts wasn't put in escrow.
The funeral homes are the Walker-Martin Funeral Home in Chesaning and the Whelpley-Martin Funeral Home in New Lothrop. Daniel Martin wasn't immediately available for comment Tuesday, but his daughter insists "no one's been cheated."
Meredith Martin says her dad was in the process of selling the funeral homes. She says the state is "crushing us" and the communities they serve.
The funeral homes can complete services that were in the works as of last Friday.
Man faces arraignment in estranged wife's slaying
DETROIT (AP) - A Detroit man has been returned to Michigan to face first-degree murder and weapons charges in the slaying of his 27-year-old estranged wife.
The Wayne County prosecutor's office said Tuesday that 28-year-old Erin Justice is expected to be arraigned Wednesday.
Justice had been fighting extradition following his arrest in June in the Atlanta area. Wayne County court records don't show Justice having an attorney.
Alicia Fox's decomposed body was found June 9 in a vacant house on Detroit's west side. She had been shot to death.
Authorities and volunteers have searched but failed to find Fox's two children, 6-year-old Kaylah Hunter and 8-month-old Kristian Justice.
Timothy Jones has been charged with being an accessory. Jones is accused of knowing about Fox's slaying and assisting the killer after it occurred.
GENERAL MOTORS-TENNESSEE FACTORY
GM likely to announce SUVs, jobs at Tenn. Plant
DETROIT (AP) - General Motors and government officials are expected to announce new vehicles and jobs Wednesday at a factory in Spring Hill, Tennessee.
GM says an announcement is scheduled for Wednesday at the plant. It's likely to get new Cadillac and GMC crossover SUVs in addition to its current product, the Chevrolet Equinox.
Neither GM nor Gov. Bill Haslam's office would comment. But the state said in a July news release that a nearby company was expanding to make parts for new GMC and Cadillac vehicles at Spring Hill.
GM is reworking the Equinox and its sister vehicle, the GMC Terrain. A new Cadillac SRX also is possible.
In 2011, GM said it would invest millions in the plant and create 1,200 more jobs. The plant now employs 1,600 hourly workers.
Detroit schools cancel 10 percent teacher pay cut
DETROIT (AP) - The Detroit schools' state-appointed emergency manager has reversed course and cancelled plans to cut teacher pay by 10 percent and increase class sizes to help overcome a $127 million budget deficit in Michigan's largest district.
Jack Martin announced the move Tuesday, six days after the Michigan Department of Education gave its approval for the pay and class size changes.
Martin's announcement followed sharp criticism from teachers, parents and others. The 10 percent pay cut was to apply to all teachers and administrators effective Oct. 1.
At a news conference Tuesday, Martin said the Detroit Public Schools will propose extending the timetable for eliminating the deficit by two years, from 2019 to 2021.
The pay cut plan followed voter rejection Aug. 5 of a property tax request to raise about $18.5 million.
State grant spurs Toyota expansion in Michigan
YORK TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) - Toyota Motor Corp. says it's expanding its technical center in Michigan and moving 250 jobs from Kentucky.
The automaker's expansion in Washtenaw County's York Township near Ann Arbor comes as a result of a $4 million state grant approved Tuesday by the Michigan Strategic Fund.
Toyota plans to build a new facility and relocate the positions from its North American manufacturing headquarters in Erlanger, Kentucky.
Township officials also are considering tax incentives.
The center serves as the corporation's research and development arm in North America, and is responsible for the development of vehicles that are built and sold throughout the continent. The company also has R&D facilities in Ann Arbor, Plymouth and Livonia.
DETROIT WATER SHUTOFFS
Detroit resumes shutting off water service
DETROIT (AP) - Bankrupt Detroit says it has resumed shutting off water to customers who have not paid bills after a month long suspension that allowed thousands of customers to set up payment plans with the city.
A moratorium on shutoffs ended Tuesday. The city didn't immediately say how many customers it planned to shut off Tuesday.
The city stepped up action in March against customers 60 days behind on paying bills or owing more than $150. About 15,000 customers had service shut off in April-June.
The move drew international reaction as some groups appealed to the United Nations to help poor residents. Water service disconnections were suspended July 21.
The last of a series of "water fairs" held Saturday helped at least 1,300 residents avoid losing water service.
Detroit funeral held for Cardinal Edmund Szoka
DETROIT (AP) - Catholic leaders and faithful have packed the Cathedral of the Most Blessed Sacrament in Detroit for the funeral of Edmund Szoka (SHAH'-kuh), an American cardinal who served as governor and financial administrator of the Vatican.
The Mass was held Tuesday morning, with Detroit Archbishop Allen Vigneron (VIG'-neh-ron) officiating.
Szoka died of natural causes on Wednesday at Providence Park Hospital in Novi, Michigan. He was 86.
Szoka was a confidant of Pope John Paul II. In addition to leading Detroit-area Catholics, Szoka later served as the governor of Vatican City.
Since his retirement from active ministry in 2006, Szoka had been living in the Detroit suburb of Northville.
AFFORDABLE CARE ACT-MICHIGAN
7 Michigan health care centers to split $1.7M
LANSING, Mich. (AP) - Seven Michigan health care centers will split a federal award of nearly $1.7 million to support construction and facility improvements.
The money will allow the centers to adopt a primary-care set-up using teams of medical professionals to treat all of a patient's health needs. That model is a focus of the nation's health care law.
Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia M. Burwell says the funding will be used to provide higher quality services, treat multiple needs of patients at once and increase access to care. She says Michigan residents should have access to quality health care regardless of their ability to pay.
More than $35 million was awarded to 147 health care centers throughout the U.S. The funding will support 21 new construction projects and 126 renovation projects.
Serial stabbing suspect sues to be sent to Israel
DETROIT (AP) - A man serving a life sentence for murder in a series of stabbings in the Flint area wants to be deported to Israel, his native country.
Elias Abuelazam (EE'-lee-us ah-BOOL'-ah-zahm) says he committed attempted murder in Latrun, Israel, in 2009, months before he arrived in Flint. He wants to go to an Israeli prison.
Abuelazam filed a handwritten lawsuit against the U.S. government in Grand Rapids federal court. It was transferred last week to a Washington court.
He's suspected of stabbing 14 people in the Flint area. Five died.
Abuelazam was convicted of killing Arnold Minor. He was charged with two more murders and six attempted murders, but no trials are planned because he's serving a no-parole sentence.
Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton says Abuelazam should stay in Michigan.
STEEL WORKER KILLED
Police ID steel plant worker killed in accident
JACKSON, Mich. (AP) - Jackson police have released the name of a steel fabricating company employee who was killed when a steel plate struck him.
The Jackson Citizen Patriot (http://bit.ly/1mNDiUW ) says he was 60-year-old Kim Duong of Jackson.
Deputy Chief John Holda says Duong was working at the John Crowley Inc. plant when "a piece of steel fell on him and caught him right in the chest." It happened about 10 a.m. Monday.
Holda says no foul play is suspected and says it's "just an unfortunate accident."
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