Latest Michigan news, sports, business and entertainment at 3:20 a.m. EDT


Pipeline tunnel supporters, foes clash before Michigan panel

TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (AP) — A Michigan agency is hearing from both sides in the debate over a proposed oil pipeline tunnel in a Great Lakes channel. The state Public Service Commission held an online public hearing Monday on Enbridge’s plan to place a segment of its Line 5 in a tunnel that would be built beneath the Straits of Mackinac. The straits connects Lake Huron and Lake Michigan. The new line would replace twin pipes that have lain across the bottom of the straits since 1953. Supporters say the project would create jobs and protect supplies to refineries and users of propane. Opponents say it’s unnecessary and would damage the local environment while contributing to global warming.


‘Dead’ woman found to be breathing at Detroit funeral home

DETROIT (AP) — Officials say a young woman who had been declared dead was discovered still alive at a Detroit funeral home. A lawyer hired by Timesha Beauchamp’s family says she opened her eyes as she was about to be embalmed. The bizarre events occurred Sunday in Southfield, Michigan, where first responders spent 30 minutes trying to revive the 20-year-old woman. The body was released to Beauchamp’s family. But then came a startling discovery at the James H. Cole funeral home: Beauchamp was still alive more than an hour later. Attorney Geoffrey Fieger says staff would have “begun draining her blood.” Beauchamp is in critical condition at a hospital.


EMU won’t open dorms for weeks; students report elsewhere

YPSILANTI, Mich. (AP) — Eastern Michigan University is keeping residence halls closed until at least mid-September. President James Smith says the risk of spreading the coronavirus is “quite serious” as the Labor Day weekend holiday approaches. Other schools around Michigan are cautiously welcoming students to campus. Students are moving into dorms this week at the University of Michigan and Grand Valley State University. Michigan Technological University in the Upper Peninsula began the annual ritual last week. Meanwhile, the state health department reported 868 new virus cases and four additional deaths Monday, raising the death toll since spring to 6,397.


Michigan’s budget outlook is not as bad as expected

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Michigan’s budget outlook is not as bad as was thought — thanks to federal pandemic relief aid, higher consumer spending and tax payments than expected, and a quicker recovery by the auto industry. In May, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s administration and legislative economists projected a combined $6.3 billion shortfall in two main funds over two year. They revised that hole downward, to $3.4 billion, in a meeting Monday. That means the situation isn’t as dire as the Democratic governor and Republican-led Legislature work to pass a budget. The shortfall for the coming fiscal year is less than $1 billion.


Operation Legend puts focus on violent crime, not politics

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — President Donald Trump and his attorney general have touted Operation Legend as a much-needed answer to spiking crime. Trump claims it’s caused, at least in part, by the police reform movement and protests that have swept across the U.S. since George Floyd’s death in May. Trump also claims he’s countering rising crime in cities run by Democrats. But to the 300 federal investigators deployed to nine cities, and the local law enforcement getting help, Operation Legend isn’t about politics. It’s about reducing crime, working to solve outstanding cases and prioritizing the arrest of violent criminals. 


Woman whose husband had cancer in prison loses lawsuit

ADRIAN, Mich. (AP) — A woman who blamed prison medical staff for failing to diagnose her husband’s cancer has failed to persuade an appeals court to revive her lawsuit. Jeff Barrett of Newaygo County died of lung cancer in 2015, a month after he was released on parole from a prison in Adrian. Judith Barrett claimed prison staff violated her husband’s rights by not finding the cancer in time, despite multiple appointments for breathing problems and other health woes. But a medical expert testified that the cancer could have developed after an X-ray revealed only a pulmonary disease. A federal appeals court recently affirmed a decision to dismiss Barrett’s lawsuit.


First phase of Dossin museum enhancements completed

DETROIT (AP) — The first phase of a $4.9 million outdoor enhancement project at Belle Isle’s Dossin Great Lakes Museum has been completed. Sponsors and supporters of the project are scheduled to mark the occasion on Saturday with a ceremony and ribbon cutting. The museum’s outdoor maritime artifacts including the famous bow anchor from the S.S. Edmund Fitzgerald have been re-displayed and upgraded as part of the project. The freighter sank in 1975 and was immortalized by Gordon Lightfoot’s song. Belle Isle is located in the Detroit River, just northeast of downtown Detroit.


Michigan man who climbed Mount Rushmore fined $1,500

RAPID CITY, S.D. (AP) — A Michigan climber who was spotted earlier this month on Mount Rushmore and later slipped down a cliff has been fined $1,500. Court documents show that dispatchers on Aug. 19 reported “a climber being seen on Mt. Rushmore on the top of George Washington’s head” was creating a “hazardous condition” by climbing an unsafe slope, falling and forcing law enforcement to track him down. The Rapid City Journal reports that Ayman Doppke pleaded guilty Thursday to illegally climbing the mountain. At one point Doppke fell 25 feet and tumbled down a loose gravel slope. He was arrested after he was treated by a medic but declined to be taken to the hospital. ​


Parishioner sacraments in limbo after invalid priest baptism

DEARBORN, Mich. (AP) — The validity of some parishioners’ sacraments like marriage and confession are under question after a Dearborn priest learned his baptism was invalid. The Detroit Free Press reports Father Matthew Hood learned that he was not a baptized Catholic earlier this month after watching a family video of his baptism where some words were changed.  Archbishop Allen Vigneron of the Catholic Archdiocese of Detroit has acknowledged “human error has resulted in disruption to the sacramental lives of some members of the faithful” and vowed to remedy the situation for those impacted.  


Election officials criticize Detroit primary ballot counts

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Michigan election officials say issues with counting primary ballots in Detroit are “alarming.” The Detroit News reports that all four members of the State Board of Canvassers criticized issues with ballot counting and one questioned whether the secretary of state should step in for November. The questions came after the newspaper’s report showing 72% of absentee voting precincts in Detroit had ballot tallies that were out of balance by at least one ballot. That meant that voter tracked in precinct poll books didn’t equal the number of ballots counted.