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FAMILY KILLED-INTERSTATE-VIGIL

Vigil held for Michigan family of 5 killed in Kentucky crash

(Information from: The Detroit News, http://detnews.com/)

NORTHVILLE, Mich. (AP) — Relatives of a Michigan family of five killed in a highway crash in Kentucky remembered their lives during an emotional candlelight vigil.

Friday’s memorial was held at Ford Field Park in Northville, Michigan, and ended with an Islamic prayer with text from the Quran.

The Abbas family was returning home from Florida last Sunday when a suspected drunken driver traveling the wrong way struck their vehicle head-on on Interstate 75 in Lexington, Kentucky.

The crash killed 42-year-old Issam Abbas, 38-year-old Rima Abbas, 14-year-old Ali Abbas, 13-year-old Isabella Abbas, and 7-year-old Giselle Abbas.

The other driver also died.

The Detroit News reports that Rimi Abbas’ sister, Rana Abbas Taylor, told mourners through tears that, “I can’t even begin to share with you how painful this has been on our entire family.”

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AERIAL GUNNERY RANGE

Michigan Air National Guard seeks input on airspace plan

GRAYLING, Mich. (AP) — The Michigan Air National Guard is seeking input on a plan to update military training airspace around an aerial gunnery range in northern Michigan that could change noise levels in surrounding communities.

The proposal would create new military operating areas in the Alpena Special Use Airspace Complex. That site is the military’s largest training zone east of the Mississippi River and includes the Grayling Aerial Gunnery Range.

The National Guard says current military operating areas were established 50 years ago and are too small for modern aircraft.

The plan would apply to parts of Alpena, Crawford, Montmorency, Otsego, Presque Isle, Huron, Sanilac and Tuscola counties.

The National Guard is currently gathering concerns from municipalities. A 45-day comment period will also open once plans are finalized in the next few months.

SOLDIER SLAIN-ARRESTS

Michigan police arrest 2 in soldier’s New Year’s Eve slaying

ST. JOSEPH TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) — Police in southern Michigan have arrested two suspects in the New Year’s Eve slaying of a soldier who was fatally shot while on leave.

The St. Joseph Township Police Department said Saturday that the suspects were arrested in 23-year-old Army Sgt. Tyrone Hassel III’s killing after authorities received a tip.

Police said no additional information, including the suspects’ names, will be released until they are arraigned.

Berrien County Prosecutor Mike Sepic will release more information Monday.

Hassel was shot Dec. 31 while visiting his family for the holidays. He died at a hospital from multiple gunshot wounds.

Hassel’s obituary says he enlisted in the Army in 2015 and was recently promoted to sergeant. He and his wife, Spc. Kemia Martin, have one son.

MARIJUANA RECALL

Michigan agency issues recall for medical marijuana products

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — A Michigan agency has issued a recall notice for several medical marijuana products that officials say failed laboratory testing.

The products were sold Dec. 27-30 at HG Lansing on East Oakland Avenue in the city of Lansing.

The state Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs says the recall targets particular batches of Citrix, Gelato, Green Crack and Oreoz.

They failed tests for contaminants such as E. coli, salmonella and chemical residues.

The notice says patients or caregivers who have the affected products should return them to HG Lansing for proper disposal.

HG Lansing is required to notify patients or caregivers who bought the recalled products.

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This version of the story corrects the 4th and 5th paragraphs to say that the products should be returned to HG Lansing, not to Compassionate Care by Design.

SHUTDOWN-POLLUTION MEETING

Shutdown scuttles meeting on groundwater contamination

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — A public meeting on groundwater contamination in a western Michigan community has been postponed because of the partial federal government shutdown.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality had scheduled the gathering for Jan. 23 at Rockford High School.

The agencies are investigating toxic chemical pollution in Kent County from the former Wolverine Worldwide tannery and a waste dump.

Among the contaminants are heavy metals and per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, known as PFAS. People living in the affected area have been offered bottled drinking water while a long-term solution is developed.

Officials say the public meeting will be rescheduled after EPA staffers return to work when the shutdown ends.

DEQ spokesman Scott Dean says the shutdown isn’t affecting day-to-day work at the tannery site.

KIDNAPPING-GUILTY PLEA

Man who kidnapped, assaulted woman gets life sentence

CHICAGO (AP) — A Michigan man who pleaded guilty to kidnapping and sexually assaulting a woman after burglarizing her suburban Chicago home has been sentenced to life in prison.

In addition to the life sentence, Carleous Clay received an additional 10-year term for attempting to take a prison caseworker hostage inside the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Chicago.

In a July plea agreement, Clay of Holland, Michigan admitted he broke into a Lansing, Illinois, home in September 2015 and stole several items. When he returned later that night to steal more items the woman was home. Clay kidnapped the woman and drove her to Munster, Indiana, where he withdrew $140 from her bank account, then sexually assaulted her. Clay later strangled the woman and tried to set her on fire.

Prosecutors say the woman survived but suffered permanent injuries.

DISMEMBERED BODY

Michigan man to stand trial in slaying, dismemberment

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) — A 29-year-old western Michigan man will stand trial in a woman’s slaying and dismemberment.

Jared Chance was bound over Friday to Kent County Circuit Court following testimony in a district court hearing. He is charged with murder, mutilation of a body, concealing a death and tampering with evidence in the death of 31-year-old Ashley Young of Oshtemo Township, southeast of Grand Rapids.

Young’s torso was found Dec. 2 in the basement of Chance’s Grand Rapids rental home. She was last seen alive on Nov. 29.

A forensic pathologist testified the body appeared to have been cut with an electric saw.

Chance’s 76-year-old father, James, and his 63-year-old mother, Barbara, will stand trial on perjury and accessory after the fact charges. They are accused of not informing police about what happened .

MICHIGAN SCHOOL-GUN

10-year-old charged after taking gun to mid-Michigan school

FLINT, Mich. (AP) — A 10-year-old boy is facing charges after taking a loaded handgun to his mid-Michigan school.

Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton said Friday the boy is charged with two felonies, carrying a concealed weapon and felonious assault, and a misdemeanor charge of having a weapon in a weapons-free zone.

Leyton tells WJRT-TV the handgun was stolen, but it’s unclear where the boy got it.

Police say the boy made fellow students at Eagle’s Nest Academy in Flint aware that he had the gun Thursday morning, and one of them took it to administrators in the school’s office. No one was injured.

The boy’s in custody at the Genesee County Regional Detention Center, located about 50 miles (80 kilometers) northwest of Detroit.

TEACHER CHARGED-SEXUAL ASSAULTS

Michigan teacher charged in sex case involving 2 students

ROCHESTER HILLS, Mich. (AP) — A 26-year-old former suburban Detroit teacher has been charged with six counts of criminal sexual conduct involving two teenage boys, ages 16 and 17.

Kathryn Houghtaling was arraigned Friday in Rochester Hills District Court. She has been fired from her job at Rochester High School, north of Detroit.

Authorities say the incidents took place at a home and in a vehicle in November and December.

Houghtaling was a special education teacher for one of the students. Defense attorney Zachary Glaza said in court Friday that the student was assigned to Houghtaling’s classroom due to a reading deficiency.

Houghtaling of Sterling Heights was jailed on a $200,000 bond. She returns to court Jan. 24 for a probable cause conference and Jan. 30 for a preliminary examination.