Latest Michigan news, sports, business and entertainment at 9:20 p.m. EDT
Detroit going door-to-door to push need for vaccinations
Officials in Detroit are putting together plans to knock on doors across the 139-square-mile city to convince residents to get vaccinated for COVID-19. The Detroit News reports that the city expects by the end of April to have crews start visiting homes to speak with residents about the importance of protecting themselves from the virus with vaccinations and how to sign up to receive the shots. Despite drive-up vaccinations at a downtown convention center, mass vaccinations at Ford Field and Saturday vaccinations at churches, only 22% of Detroit residents have received at least one vaccine dose compared to 38% for all of Michigan.
Judge on Michigan’s top court works while overseas
DETROIT (AP) — A Michigan Supreme Court justice says he’s been overseas for three months. Richard Bernstein says he’s participating in an international program to improve the perception of people with disabilities while pulling all-nighters to keep up with his work in Michigan. Bernstein is blind and Jewish. He says he’s passionate about the work he’s been doing in the United Arab Emirates and Israel and is in no rush to return to Michigan while the court is closed for face-to-face business during the pandemic. Bernstein says he uses a phone to listen and participate in oral arguments twice a month.
Michigan city seeks expert to discuss future of Custer site
MONROE, Mich. (AP) — A city in southeastern Michigan wants to hire an expert to try to reach a community consensus over the future of a monument dedicated to Gen. George Custer. Custer lived in Monroe. He’s long been recognized as a heroic Army officer, first during the Civil War. But critics note that he also went to war against Native Americans before dying at the Battle of the Little Bighorn in 1876. Custer is immortalized in a statue that shows him on a horse in downtown Monroe. The city council voted to seek a consultant who would work with the community. Options include adding more information about the Indian wars, moving the monument to another location or removing it from public view.
EXOTIC ANIMALS SEIZED-HOME
Lizards, tarantulas, tortoise among animals seized from home
LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Lizards, tarantulas, a prairie dog and a desert tortoise are among about 40 animals removed from a mid-Michigan home during a neglect investigation. Ingham County Animal Control officers also found rats, mice, an iguana and about two dozen dogs and cats Wednesday at the house in Lansing. Animal Control Director Heidi Williams says the lizards included geckos and a tegu, which is native to South America. Staff from Lansing’s Potter Park Zoo who have expertise in the care of exotic animals accompanied officers to the house. Authorities had received anonymous complaints about the welfare of the animals at the home.
NUCLEAR PLANT-BOMB THREAT
Man who claims he had bomb outside nuclear plant arrested
NORTH PERRY, Ohio (AP) — Authorities say a man who drove to a nuclear power plant outside Cleveland and claimed he had a bomb has been arrested. The Lake County Sheriff’s Office says in a statement released Thursday that the 33-year-old Adrian, Michigan, man drove to the entrance of the Perry Nuclear Power Plant around 6 p.m. Wednesday and told plant security officers he had a bomb in the trailer attached to his pickup truck. No bomb was found. The sheriff’s office in its statement said there was no threat to the North Perry Village plant that Energy Harbor acquired from FirstEnergy Corp. in U.S. Bankruptcy Court.
NHL grapples with vaccine inequity between U.S. and Canada
The NHL is in the most difficult position among the four major North American professional sports leagues on vaccinations because seven of its teams are based in Canada. The U.S. is vaccinating 3 million a day and has widespread availability. The NFL, NBA and Major League Baseball have plans to relax virus protocols when a certain percentage of team personnel are fully protected by vaccines against COVID-19. The world’s top hockey league does not have that luxury. The NHL instead is grappling with an outbreak in Vancouver and vaccine inequity on opposite sides of the border.
ABANDONED BABY-WOODED AREA
Deputies find baby in wooded area northwest of Detroit
ORION TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) — A 37-year-old suburban Detroit mother could face child abuse charges after her 4-month-old son was found cold, wet and lying face-down in a wooded area near a creek. The Oakland County sheriff’s office says deputies found the baby Wednesday in Orion Township, about 40 miles northwest of Detroit. The search began after deputies spoke with a distraught woman who reportedly was ringing doorbells and hiding in bushes about 8:30 a.m. Wednesday. She later was seen pounding on the doors of a middle school in the area. Deputies learned she had an infant son. The sheriff’s office said they also saw burrs on her pants and began searching the area for the baby.
GENERAL MOTORS-CHIP SHORTAGE
Chip shortage forces more production cuts by GM, Ford
DETROIT (AP) — The global shortage of semiconductors is forcing General Motors and Ford to further cut production at North American factories as chip supplies seem to be growing tighter. The shutdowns likely will crimp dealer inventory of vehicles made at the plants. GM says it has managed to keep factories humming that make hot-selling and profitable full-size pickup trucks and SUVs. The chip shortage has already been rippling through markets since last summer, but it has hit the global auto industry hardest. GM says Thursday that production cuts will take place at its Spring Hill, Tennessee; Ramos Arizpe, Mexico; Ingersoll, Ontario; Fairfax, Kansas; Lansing, Michigan, Delta Township; and Lansing, Michigan, Grand River factories.
Michigan promotes shots, not more restrictions, during surge
DETROIT (AP) — Michigan’s health director says the state is focusing on getting more people vaccinated, not imposing new restrictions on the economy, despite a wave of COVID-19 cases. Elizabeth Hertel notes that indoor high school sports, a source of infections, are wrapping up soon, and spring sports are outdoors. All teen athletes must be regularly tested. Michigan lately has been No. 1 in the U.S. for new COVID-19 cases. The health department says about 37% of residents 16 and older has had at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. The number of people with COVID-19 admitted to Michigan hospitals has doubled every 12 to 14 days for three weeks.
FATAL POLICE SHOOTING-DETROIT
Prosecutor: No charges for police in fatal Detroit shooting
A prosecutor has decided not to charge Detroit officers in the fatal shooting of a Black man who was man recorded by police body cameras as he shot at an officer. Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy told reporters Wednesday that Hakim Littleton was shot July 10 in self-defense. The 20-year-old fired shots at an officer during the arrest of an acquaintance of Littleton’s. Officers returned fire, striking Littleton. Soon afterward, dozens of protesters converged at the site of the shooting, yelling at police and chanting “Black Lives Matter” and “Defund DPD!” The shooting came as demonstrations were being held in Detroit and other cities following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis.