Tuesday Morning State News Summary
Tue, 02 Jul 2013 01:36:03 EDT
A federal judge in Detroit says a case challenging the state's same-sex marriage
ban along with the ban on adoption by same sex couples, should go to trial.
The suit was filed by two Detroit-area lesbians who are raising three children.
Michigan law says only heterosexual married couples may adopt children. The
couple's lawsuit contends their civil rights are being violated.
Judge Bernard Friedman wrote that the plaintiffs (quote) "are entitled to their
day in court and they shall have it."
The Detroit News reports that he is expected to set a trial date at a hearing
scheduled on July 10th.
His ruling comes on the heels of the decision by the U-S Supreme Court to strike
down the federal ban on recognition of same-sethose charged with crimes but who
cannot afford an attorney.
Michigan has been criticized for having an inadequate system for providing
representation for poor defendants.
Among other things, the legislation creates a permanent state commission, to be
called the Michigan Indigent Defense Commission, that will deal with legal
representation for indigent defendants.
It also creates payment levels required for local governments and directs the
state to cover additional costs to improve counties' public defense systems.
The commission will consist of 16 members who will research, develop and enforce
new minimum standards for providing constitutionally-guaranteed legal
representation in jurisdictions across Michigan.
The governor says (quote) "for too long in Michigan, many indigent defendants
have not received the level of legal representation that they deserve." He says
the legislation shows that they're now taking action to fix the problem.
Snyder estimated the cost to the state in (quote) "some millions of dollars" and
he anticipates requesting funds in upcoming supplemental appropriations bills.
The State House Fiscal Agency estimated in 2012 the state would have to invest
up to $50 million a year to match the national average for per-capita spending
on indigent defense.
Drunk drivers will be red, white and busted this Fourth of July because law
enforcement officers from 156 agencies in 26 Michigan counties are putting extra
officers out on the road starting tonight (Monday) as part of a statewide drunk
The one-week "Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over" campaign runs through Monday July
7th and includes officers from local police departments, sheriff offices and
Michigan State Police posts across the state.
Michigan Office Of Highway Safety Planning Director Michael Prince says drunk
driving is a serious offense with serious consequences, and motorists need to
designate a sober driver if they plan to be drinking.
During the 2012 July Fourth holiday period, four people were killed in four
traffic crashes. Although none of the crashes involved alcohol.
In Michigan, it is illegal to drive with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of
point-zero-eight or higher, although motorists can be arrested at any BAC level
if an officer feels they are impaired. Under the states high BAC law, motorists
face enhanced penalties if a first-time arrest is for a point-one-seven BAC or
Statistics show that alcohol-related traffic deaths and serious injuries
increase during the summer months, with July and August being the highest.
During a five-year period (2008-2012), alcohol involvement resulted in 743
deaths and incapacitating injuries during the month of July and 753 deaths and
serious injuries during the month of August.
Police in Michigan will conduct a second statewide drunk driving enforcement
campaign over the Labor Day Holiday at the end of August.
A state lawmaker is proposing a new restriction on so-called "credit scoring,"
which insurance companies use to set insurance rates.
State House Democrat Theresa Abed of Grand Ledge is sponsor of the legislation
which prohibits insurers from using the absence of a credit score or their
inability to calculate a credit score in determining a premium.
Insurance companies often use a person's credit worthiness to set insurance
rates through the offering of discounts on their premiums.
But Abed says some people don't have credit scores because they don't borrow
money, so using the lack of a score is wrong.
She says it amounts to penalizing someone because they're careful with money and
don't have credit cards.
The price of gas in Michigan continues it's decline.
Triple-A reports that the nearly 1.4 Michigan motorists traveling on vacation 50
miles or more from home this July 4th holiday will find the states average gas
price down 19.7 cents this week, and down 80 cents since June 7ths $4.25 per
Michigans current statewide average is $3.44 per gallon, 2.8 cents more that at
this time last year.
The lowest price found among the markets surveyed was in Traverse City at $3.30
per gallon. The highest was in the Marquette area at $3.57
AAA surveys 2,800 Michigan gas stations daily.
(Detroit-Near Plane Collision)
The Federal Aviation Administration says it's investigating a near in-air
collision between a Texas-bound Spirit Airlines flight and a skydiving plane
The FAA says the incident happened Sunday when a Spirit flight with 126
passengers was forced to rapidly descend 1,600 feet after controllers reported
another plane nearby. The planes flew within 1.6 miles of each other.
While passengers were startled by the sudden drop, no injuries were reported.
The airline says its pilot acted appropriately in changing course.
The Washtenaw County dive team has found the body of a 21-year-old Pittsfield
Township man who disappeared after he jumped off an overpass into the Huron
Ypsilanti fire Capt. Scott Maddison said about a half-dozen young adults jumped
from the bridge into the water before dawn on Sunday. He said one of the
jumpers, Donovan Hyter, panicked, went under water and never resurfaced.
Maddison said a lifeguard who was part of the group attempted to rescue him, but
Crews searched the water in the area, near Superior Road in Ypsilanti, all day
Sunday and Monday.
Washtenaw County Sheriffs spokesman Derrick Jackson said Hyters body was
recovered early Monday evening.
Census workers made their way around Royal Oak Monday.
But it's not the kind of census you may be accustomed to.
Workers were going door-to-door to make sure dogs in the city are licensed and
up-to-date on rabies shots.
According to city officials, the count is an attempt to control the rise of
unlicensed dogs in the city. City officials say, theres an estimated 23-thousand
dogs in Royal Oak, but only 35-hundred have licenses.
(Help from: 24/7 News Source)
Nationwide, hospitals are beefing up security in an attempt to protect emergency
room personnel from violence.
Dr. Terry Kowalenko of Royal Oak's Beaumont Hospital told the Detroit News
(quote) "nobody wants to talk about the number of incidents within their
emergency departments but there's no question it's a big problem."
Hospital workers report being shoved, spat upon and having knives pulled on
them. In addition to the installation of metal detectors, hospital employees are
learning techniques to get out of the way of aggressive patients.
A Los-Angeles based artist says he's hidden ten-thousand dollars, mostly in
one-dollar bills, around the city of Detroit. David Choe (CHO) posted pictures
on his Facebook page last night offering hints to where some of the cash could
One picture showed an old sofa on an unidentified sidewalk. The sofa had a
painting on it pointing to a hole where the money is allegedly waiting to be
Tonight's (Tue) Mega Millions lotto game jackpot is worth $70 (M) million
The winning numbers for the Midday 3 lottery were: 1-3-1.
The winning numbers for the Midday 4 lottery were: 5-6-0-1.
The winning numbers for the Evening 3 lottery were: 2-1-8.
The winning numbers for the Evening 4 lottery were: 9-1-8-4.
The winning numbers for the Fantasy 5 lottery were: 16-17-18-23-31.
The winning numbers for the Keno lottery were: 06, 07, 12, 14, 17, 19, 20, 21,
25, 28, 31, 32, 35, 41, 49, 56, 62, 65, 67, 73, 76, 78.
Wednesday's Powerball jackpot is worth $60 (M) million dollars.
Wednesday's Classic Lotto 47 jackpot is worth eight-point-eight-five (M) million