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ELECTION 2020-VOTER INTIMIDATION-DETROIT
Detroit NAACP to monitor voting sites for intimidation
DETROIT (AP) — The Detroit NAACP branch announced Tuesday that its members and area attorneys will monitor polls across the city and state on Election Day for instances of voter intimidation or voter suppression. The group said that if any such efforts are seen, or if any voters feel threatened by gun-carrying individuals “watching” the polls, police and prosecutors will be contacted. They point to President Donald Trump’s encouragement of a far-right extremist group to “stand back and stand by” and his calls for an army of “poll watchers” to keep tabs on polling places as reasons to be vigilant. Other voting rights advocates around the U.S. have similar concerns heading into next Tuesday’s presidential election.
Judge stops Election Day gun ban near Michigan polling sites
DETROIT (AP) — A judge has blocked a sudden ban on the open display of guns near Michigan polling places on Election Day. Judge Christopher Murray acted Tuesday, just a few hours after hearing a challenge from gun-rights groups. They said Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson, a Democrat, had exceeded her authority in banning people from openly carrying guns within 100 feet of polling places. Critics argued that Benson failed to go through a formal rule-making process as required under state law. The judge agreed. Attorney General Dana Nessel pledged to appeal Murray’s decision with just days left until the election.
Lansing police sued over April jail death; ‘I can’t breathe’
LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Police in Lansing are being sued by the family of a man who died in a jail last spring. Officers pinned Anthony Hulon to the ground on his chest and stomach, interfering with his ability to breathe, according to the lawsuit. Attorney Jennifer Damico says Hulon died from asphyxia, or suffocation, and his death was ruled a homicide by the Ingham County medical examiner. Lansing police and city officials declined to comment on the lawsuit. State police investigated Hulon’s death and sent a report to the attorney general’s office. The investigation remains open.
2 conservative hoaxers charged in Ohio for robocalls
CLEVELAND (AP) — Two conservative operatives under scrutiny for organizing tens of thousands of hoax robocalls falsely warning about consequences for voting by mail have been charged with telecommunications fraud and bribery in Ohio. 22-year-old Jacob Wohl, of Los Angeles, and 54-year-old Jack Burkman, of Arlington, Virginia, face similar charges in Michigan. The prosecutor for Cuyahoga County, where the men were indicted Tuesday, says 8,100 robocalls were made to residents in the majority-Black cities of Cleveland and East Cleveland warning information from their mailed ballots could be used to enforce arrest warrants, collect debts and forced vaccinations.
Worst place, worst time: Trump faces virus spike in Midwest
OSHKOSH, Wis. (AP) — The coronavirus is getting worse in states that President Donald Trump needs the most. The upper Midwest is bearing much of the brunt of new infections surging across the U.S. That includes Wisconsin, where Trump is fighting to catch Democrat Joe Biden in a state Trump narrowly won in 2016. Also seeing a surge is Iowa, where Trump is now in a toss-up race with Biden after carrying the state by 9.4 percentage points four years ago. Both states are in the top 10 of those with the fastest-growing number of cases per capita over the past two weeks.
Detroit Schools released from 11 years of state oversight
DETROIT (AP) — A commission has released the 47,000-student Detroit Public Schools from more than a decade of state financial oversight, restoring full control of the district’s finances to the city’s elected school board. The Detroit Financial Review Commission on Monday approved waivers handing control back to the district. The last time the district was fully in charge was in 2009 before a series of state-appointed emergency managers were installed with the directive to fix a district neck-deep in red ink whose students routinely scored at or near the bottom on standardized tests. The federal government raised questions in 2008 about the district’s $53 million in spending.
1-year sentence for angry fan who made football game threat
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — A judge has sentenced a California man to a year and a day in prison for threatening a shooting at Ohio State University in 2018. The government says Daniel Rippy made the threats during Ohio State’s defeat of Michigan during the teams’ annual football match-up. Federal Judge Algenon Marbley had harsh words for Rippy at Tuesday’s sentencing, saying he epitomized fandom spiraling out of control, something that can be ignored in the age of mass shootings. But Marbley also said he recognized that Rippy’s mental health issues contributed to the incident. Rippy apologized several times for his actions.
Detroit girl shot by father as he tries to stop dog attack
DETROIT (AP) — Police in Detroit say a 2-year-old girl was mauled by a dog and accidentally shot by her father who was trying to stop the animal. The girl was rushed to surgery because of bites on her head and face. Capt. Gary Johnson says a “huge” dog charged at the girl when someone opened the front door at her home. The girl’s father fired many shots at the dog but also struck his daughter in the arm. Police say she’s expected to survive. The dog was killed.
ELECTION 2020-ABSENTEE BALLOTS
Judge won’t upset online system for absentee ballot sign-up
LANSING, Mich. (AP) — A judge has rejected a challenge to Michigan’s online request system for absentee ballots. Critics claim the online option violates Michigan law, which requires a signed application. But Judge Cynthia Stephens says critics waited too long to seek an injunction and “merely theorize” that fraud might occur. The secretary of state started online absentee voter applications in June. Signatures on file for a driver’s license or a state ID are good enough to get a ballot. More than 74,000 voters have submitted online applications for an absentee ballot.
MICHIGAN GOVERNOR-KIDNAPPING PLOT
More time sought to indict in governor kidnapping case
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) — Federal prosecutors are asking a judge to give them an extra 40 days until mid-December to seek a grand jury indictment in an alleged scheme to kidnap Michigan’s governor. Prosecutors say they’re sorting through evidence, including explosive-device components. The components and firearms could lead to additional charges. Authorities allege members of two anti-government paramilitary groups plotted the kidnapping of Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, a Democrat. Six men are charged in federal court. A judge previously said there is enough evidence for prosecutors to seek an indictment by the first week of November. Prosecutors say defense attorneys have raised no objections to an extension.