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VIRUS OUTBREAK-MASK SHOOTING
State employee killed after mask dispute disciplined 3 times
DETROIT (AP) — Personnel records show a state employee who was suspected of a stabbing after a face mask dispute and was later fatally shot by a sheriff’s deputy was reprimanded for three work incidents from 2017 to 2018. The Detroit News reports Michigan Department of Transportation employee Sean Ruis was disciplined following interactions with colleagues, including for “unacceptable” behavior with a manager. Ruis was shot last month near Lansing after a stabbing inside a Quality Dairy store. State police say a sheriff’s deputy shot the 43-year-old when he tried to attack her. He was holding a screwdriver and knives.
SUMPTER TOWNSHIP SLAYINGS
Man surrenders in slaying of 4 in rural area near Detroit
SUMPTER TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) — Police say the suspect in the deaths of four people at a home in a rural area near Detroit has surrendered to authorities. Police in Wayne County’s Sumpter Township said Sunday night that 37-year-old Raymond Lee Bailey turned himself in to the Bay County Sheriff’s Office. Officers had found two men and two women dead from apparent gunshot wounds on Saturday at the residence along a gravel road in Sumpter Township. Police say detectives identified Bailey, an ex-boyfriend of one of the women, as a suspect in the slayings and had believe he was headed toward Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. Bailey’s vehicle was found abandoned near Bay City.
NO-KILL ANIMAL SHELTER
Western Michigan group planning no-kill animal shelter
AMBER TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) — An organization in western Michigan has plans for an animal shelter where euthanasia is not an option. Mason County PAWS has finalized the purchase of a 12.5-acre property near Ludington for a no-kill shelter. Jacklyn Osgood, the nonprofit’s president, said it’s a big step for the organization and for area’s animal advocates. The plan is to build a shelter capable of housing between 10 and 20 kennels for dogs, with room for about 50 cats at a time.
Legislature, Whitmer reach deal on return-to-school bills
LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Michigan schools that deem it safe to provide in-person classes during the coronavirus pandemic would have to prioritize the option for K-5 students under legislation approved by the state Senate. The bills passed Saturday would also largely base districts’ state funding on last year’s pupil count to account for enrollment uncertainty. They reflect a deal announced Friday by legislative leaders and Gov. Gretchen Whitmer. The agreement would waive a requirement that schools have 1,098 hours and 180 days of instruction. Republicans agreed to remove a House-proposed requirement that schools offer in-person learning to K-5 students. The House plans to vote on Monday.
Plan for old Detroit fairgrounds includes Amazon warehouse
DETROIT (AP) — A real estate developer with eyes on buying part of the former Michigan State Fairgrounds in Detroit is in negotiations that would bring an Amazon distribution center to the site. Hillwood Investment Properties and local partner the Sterling Group plan to purchase 142 acres of the property along Detroit’s northern city limits. More than 1,200 full-time jobs are expected to be created. Amazon could become the first anchor tenant and occupy about half of the 142 acres. Officials say the proposed project would be privately financed, without tax breaks or other financial incentives.
Right-wing group, counter-protesters clash in Michigan
KALAMAZOO, Mich. (AP) — A white nationalist group and counter-protesters clashed violently Saturday afternoon in western Michigan, resulting in arrests. The confrontation occurred at a planned rally in Kalamazoo by a group known as the Proud Boys. Assistant Chief Vernon Coakley of the Kalamazoo Department of Public Safety said a few people were arrested, but didn’t know exactly how many. The Proud Boys scheduled a rally while counter-protesters staged their own event in the area, reporters on the scene said. When the Proud Boys arrived, the confrontation ensued. Some fist fights occurred before police arrived and ordered the crowds to disperse.
Michigan DNR sets online auction of 200-plus land parcels
LANSING, Mich. (AP) — More than 200 parcels of state-managed land are scheduled for online auction in September and October. Michigan’s Department of Natural Resources says surplus land sales are part of its public land strategy and that the parcels feature lake frontage, trail access and small lots that can be extended to neighborhood lots. Ten online auctions will be held between Sept. 8 and Oct. 5. The parcels of land primarily are located in Michigan’s central and northern Lower Peninsula and in the Upper Peninsula. Several of the largest parcels are in Allegan, Antrim, Newaygo, Oscoda and Otsego counties. Properties range in size from under an acre to 40 acres.
Whitmer order requires COVID-19 testing in prison, jails
LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has signed an executive order requiring jails and prisons to test inmates for COVID-19 when they enter, transfer from or are released from their facilities. The order issued Saturday also requires jails to adopt testing protocols comparable to those at the Michigan Department of Corrections before they can transfer prisoners to state facilities. Whitmer said that “by reducing the spread of COVID-19 in prisons and jails, we protect corrections officers and their families, incarcerated people, and the whole community.” Jails that have already resumed transfers to state facilities under a prior executive order have until Sept. 8 to comply.
CHILD TRAFFICKING-GENESEE COUNTY
17 arrested after child trafficking probe in Flint area
FLINT, Mich. (AP) — Seventeen people have been arrested following an investigation into child trafficking in the Flint area. Genesee County Sheriff Chris Swanson says a rescue operation Friday located seven children ages 17 and under. Swanson says a law enforcement team over five months set up six stings in which law enforcement agents posed as 13, 14, and 15-year-old children on social media sites. People who then arrived at locations expecting to be able to assault those children were instead arrested, and will be prosecuted, Swanson said. He did not say which charges they are likely to face.
Scavenging bald eagles face threat from vehicles in Michigan
LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Bald eagles that soar majestically through Michigan skies are finding danger on the ground. The Detroit News reports that a study in the Journal of Wildlife Management shows the birds are being struck by vehicles as they scavenge roadkill. Marvin Roberson is a forest ecologist for the Michigan Sierra Club. He says: “Bald eagles are scavengers, and roadkill is a favorite form of food for them because they are sitting on the road.” The study was conducted by biologist Kendall Simon, who works for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. She focused on 1,490 dead bald eagles and found that most of them were females.