Thursday Afternoon State News Summary
Thu, 11 Oct 2012 12:21:41 EDT
(Dearborn-Ford C-Max Energi)
Ford Motor Company says its new C-Max Energi is Americas most fuel-efficient
plug-in hybrid electric vehicle.
According to the Dearborn-based automaker, the vehicle achieves a U.S.
Environmental Protection Agency-certified 108 miles-per-gallon equivalent city
rating and 100 MPG combined rating.
The rating tops its largest competitor, the 2012 Toyota Prius plug-in hybrid, by
five combined MPGs. Ford has consistently gone after the Toyota vehicle with the
The C-Max Energi goes on sale next month with a starting price at $29,995
following a federal tax credit. It can operate in electric-only mode or as a
normal hybrid which uses both batteries and the gasoline engine as needed or it
can tap only the gas engine to save the battery pack for future electric
The Energi joins the C-Max Hybrid as part of Fords first hybrid-only dedicated
lineup of vehicles. The C-Max hybrid went on sale last month with a fuel economy
of 47 miles per gallon and a starting price of $25,000.
Both are built at Fords Michigan Assembly Plant in Wayne.
(MIPoll-Obama Lead Slipping)
President Barack Obama's lead in Michigan seems to be slipping.
According to a new poll conducted for the "Detroit News" and WDIV-TV, Obama's
double-digit lead has been cut in half since last week's debate. The President
now holds a 49-percent to 42-percent lead over Republican challenger Mitt
Prior to the debate, Obama had a 15-percent lead on Romney.
(Kellogg's mini-wheat recall)
Kellogg's is recalling millions of boxes of mini-wheats because they may be
contaminated with pieces of flexible metal mesh.
Kellogg's says the voluntary recall focuses on select packages of Frosted
Mini-Wheats Bite Size Original and Mini-Wheats Unfrosted Bite Size.
The company says recalled products include only Frosted Mini-Wheats Bite Size
Original and Mini-Wheats Unfrosted Bite Size with the letters KB, AP or FK
before or after the "Best If Used Before" date.
No injuries have been reported, and the company is working with retailers to
remove the boxes from shelves.
Kellogg's web site is inviting invites consumers to call its help hotline if
they have questions.
(Wayne Co-Bashara Guilty)
The Grosse Pointe Park man accused of solicitation of murder for attempting to
hire a hitman to kill his wife's alleged murderer entered a plea of guilty this
Robert Bashara was in court before Wayne Circuit Judge Judge Bruce Morrow and
said he "foolishly and regrettably" offered to pay someone to kill Joe Gentz in
the Wayne County Jail. He allegedly wanted to prevent Gentz from testifying in
any future court proceedings.
Gentz claims Bashara hired him to kill 56-year-old Jane Bashara, whose body was
found inside her SUV in a Detroit alley on January 25. Bashara will be
sentenced November 20.
Gentz will be in court next week to be arraigned on charges in Jane Bashara's
(Kent Co-Sex Assault Probe)
The U.S. Department of Education says that the Forest Hills School District
near Grand Rapids did not properly investigate a girl's complaint of having been
sexually assaulted in the bandroom.
Even though the school district had said it did investigate when the incident
occurred nearly two years ago, it ended up turning the matter over to the Kent
County Sheriff's Department.
Federal Officials told WOOD-TV that the school district itself should have done
a more thorough job.
Superintendent Dan Behm said the schools have to train principals on how to do
better investigations, as well as learn to recognize when a situation will turn
into a Title IX federal case.
(John Bry, WOOD, Grand Rapids)
(Berrien Co-Eavesdropping Sentence)
The southwest Michigan man who hid a video camera in the shower of the family he
was living with in Galien (guh-LEEN) will spend nearly a year in jail and be on
probation for five years.
Joseph Shoemaker of Three Oaks was sentenced this week in Berrien County Trial
Court after pleading guilty last month to charges of eavesdropping and capturing
or distributing the image of an unclothed person. That was for footage of the
woman as she showered. He also planted a digital audio recorder in the bedroom
of the woman and her husband.
In addition to the jail time and probation, the 35-year old Shoemaker will pay
over 26-hundred dollars in fines, has to register as a sex offender and is no
longer allowed to use a computer, camera or phone that has Internet access.
(Mike Arney, WSJM, St. Joseph/Benton Harbor)
(Calhoun Co-Murder Suspect Free)
A murder suspect in Calhoun County is free due to a paperwork issue.
50-year-old Lauren O'Melay of Marshall was charged in April with open murder in
the shooting death of 66-year-old Larry Denniston on a Marengo Township farm.
He was ordered held without bond with a trial date of November 6th. However,
OMelay's attorney filed a motion challenging that court date, saying the Calhoun
County Prosecutor's Office was breaking state law of requiring a trial within
180 days for those who were being held in jail.
O'Melay's trial was set to start more than 200 days after his arrest, which
prompted the judge to let him go until then.
(Ontonagon Co-Hockey Association Embezzlement)
A western Upper Peninsula woman will spend two months in jail for stealing more
than $15,000 from a youth hockey organization.
43-year old Anne Pollard of Ontonagon had pleaded no contest to attempted
embezzlement. She admitted taking the money while serving as treasurer of the
Ontonagon Amateur Hockey Association. The exact amount is still unknown.
An Ontonagon County Circuit Court judge this week also ordered Pollard to pay
$15,500 in restitution.
According to Houghton Daily Mining Gazette, Pollard still faces multiple counts
of embezzlement involving Copper Country Mental Health.
(Ottawa Co-Squirrel Fire)
Fire investigators say a blaze at an apartment complex in Ottawa County's
Holland Township that left 23 people homeless Wednesday was started by a man
using a propane torch to get the fur off a dead squirrel.
Fire Chief Jim Kohsel said apparently the man intended to eat the squirrel but
felt he needed to burn off the fur first.
Kohsel said the man was on his third floor balcony of the Clearview Apartments
at the time. The flames spread rapidly across the roof, which caved-in over the
three story apartment building.
Eight apartments were destroyed, and apartments on lower levels were damaged by
smoke and water. A total of 32 apartments are damaged and can not be inhabited.
No residents were injured in the blaze while one firefighter suffered a broken
(Help from: John Bry, WOOD, Grand Rapids)