Friday Morning State News Summary
Fri, 18 Jan 2013 01:54:01 EST
(Mount Pleasant-CMU Abduction-UPDATE)
Isabella County authorities say a 30-year old Mount Pleasant man was shot and killed by a Crawford County Sheriff deputy near Gaylord ending an overnight, three-county crime spree.
Police say Eric Ramsey was killed after he rammed three police vehicles in Otsego and Crawford Counties.
The incident began when Ramsey kidnaped a female Central Michigan University student, taking her in her own car to an Isabella County residence where he raped her and threatened to kill her.
The woman escaped by jumping out of her own car while Ramsey was driving south of Mount Pleasant. She ran to a nearby house for help.
Investigators say Ramsey failed in an attempt to burn the house down.
The kidnap victim suffered a broken arm jumping out of her car and a State Police trooper suffered minor injuries when Ramsey hit the trooper's patrol car with the victim's car. The Crawford County deputy who shot and killed Ramsey was not hurt.
State Police, Isabella County Sheriff deputies and CMU Police are investigating the incident.
(Bill Hewitt, WSGW, Saginaw)

(Also See Related Story HERE


(Snyder-SOS Detroit Snub)
Noticeably absent from Governor Rick Snyder’s annual State of the State address Wednesday night: any significant mention of Detroit.
Today, some are questioning why Snyder failed to acknowledge Detroit Mayor Dave Bing in any substantial way or recognize the Motor City’s ongoing fiscal struggle, even as Detroit is under review for a possible state takeover.
State Senator Burt Johnson of Wayne County says to have no mention of Detroit, and with all that is happening in the city and with the looming questions about the future of Detroit from a financial standpoint, it was glaring that Bing wasn’t mentioned.
But, Snyder said this speech was about the state at large and not mentioning Detroit wasn’t meant to be offensive. He said he discussed Detroit a bit when he talked about strengthening neighborhoods in general.
The Governor says he was happy to have the mayor at the Capitol and appreciates the hard work the Bing administration is doing on trying to improve the city.
(WWJ, Detroit)


(Capitol-New Department)
Governor Rick Snyder has signed an executive order combining two agencies into a new Department of Insurance and Financial Services.
The office will take on the duties currently handled by the Office of Financial and Insurance Regulation and the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs.
Snyder says the move will reduce government red tape to help Michigan's economy grow. He noted that insurance and financial services businesses are vital to the economy. Michigan is the home to over 300 state banks and 149 insurance companies.
The order goes into effect in 60 days.
Snyder plans to appoint current Insurance Commissioner Kevin Clinton as the new department's director, subject to advice and consent of the Senate.


(Capitol-Gun Exemption)
State Senate Republicans have introduced legislation designed to exempt Michigan-made firearms that stay within the state from federal regulation.
The measure was introduced Wednesday, the same day President Barack Obama called on Congress to reinstate bans on military-style assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition magazines and to pass universal background checks for gun purchases.
Obama's proposed gun control reform follows the mass shooting at an elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut.
Michigan's proposed exemption is similar to laws passed in eight states and introduced in several others.
However, the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives has issued letters to those states, stating that federal law supersedes the state laws, and all provisions of the Gun Control Act and the National Firearms Act continue to apply.


(MI-Adoptive Parents)
The Michigan Department of Human Services says some adoptive parents may not have received a monthly subsidy this month.
Last year, DHS began mailing notices instructing adoptive parents to register updated addresses and tax information because of a new computer system that was taking over in the beginning of 2013. Those who did not register did not receive subsidies this month.
Spokesperson Dave Akerly says around 3,000 of the 27,000 parents did not register, with the number reduced to about 800 as of Wednesday afternoon.
He says DHS continues to work to solve the issue and get parents their subsidies, but they still must register. Parents can register online or fax in a W-9 tax form.


(MI-Lake Levels)
Water levels reached record lows in lakes Michigan and Huron in December.
According to figures from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Lake Michigan/Huron’s monthly mean level for December was 576.15 feet, which was 3 inches lower than November’s level and 17 inches below its level in December of 2011. The previous record low for December was set in 1964 at 576.18 feet.
All of the Great Lakes experienced lowered water levels in 2012 due to little snowfall in the winter and light rainfall in the spring. But lakes Michigan and Huron were the only ones to set a new December low.
The average water level of Lake Superior for December was 600.59 feet, which was 2 inches below November’s level and 1 inch below the level of the previous year.
Lake Erie’s average water level was 570.28 feet in December, which was 1 inch below the level of November and 23 inches below December 2011.
The level of Lake Ontario for December was near November’s level with a mean of 243.7 feet. The December water level was 13 inches below the level a year earlier.


(Grand Blanc Twp-GM Weld Tool Center)
General Motors will close the Grand Blanc Weld Tool Center this summer.
The automaker says operations at the plant will be stopped in July and employees will be offered positions at Flint Tool and Die, Warren Tech Center and the Parma Metal Center in Ohio.
GM spokesman Robert Wheeler says the plant's 343 employees were notified of the closing Thursday morning.
He says GM is closing the plant in an effort to consolidate operations and save money.
Mlive.com reports the 1.7 million-square-foot plant, sits on 312 acres, 80 of them within the city of Grand Blanc. The city of Grand Blanc provides water for the plant.


(St. Clair Shores-Bodies Found-UPDATE)
Authorities are hoping autopsies will determine what caused the deaths of two people whose bodies were discovered in a St. Clair Shores home Tuesday.
Police say the bodies of 38-year old Rebecca Brown and a man who police refuse to identify, were found by authorities lying on the floor of the living room of the house.
According to investigators, there were no signs of foul play. Authorities tested for a possible carbon monoxide leak but tests showed no signs of the gas.
The Macomb County Medical Examiner said he has to wait for micro slides and a toxicology report before he can confirm the cause of death.
(Help from: Metro Source)


(Grand Rapids-Murder Suspect Arraigned)
A Grand Rapids teen has been formally charged in the shooting death of a 23-year old man.
18-year-old Ali Sharif Gray was arraigned Thursday in Kent County District Court on charges of open murder and using a firearm to commit a felony.
Anthony Tompkins was found dead on the sidewalk outside his home on the city's northeast side Monday night. Police say he died of a single gunshot wound. According to court records, Gray has confessed to killing Tompkins.
Police Chief Kevin Belk says it's believed both were in a gang.
Gray was arraigned Wednesday on an unrelated armed robbery charge. He remains jailed without bond and is expected back in court later this month.
(Help from: John C. Smith, WOOD, Grand Rapids)


(Lansing-Drug Bust)
Nineteen people are behind bars facing drug, gun or other charges in the federal or state court systems. Most were arrested last week following a crackdown on drug activity and violent crime in northwest Lansing.
The Lansing Police Department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives had been working on the investigation for two years.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office says ten of the suspects have been indicted on federal charges, while Lansing police say the nine others have been charged in state court. If convicted, some face up to 20 years in prison.
Authorities believe the conspiracy grossed at least $27,000.


---Note Nature---

(Saginaw-Sexual Assault)
A 73-year-old Saginaw area man accused of sexually assaulting a girl over a 16-year period is going to prison.
Robert Potts on Tuesday pleaded guilty to three counts of third-degree criminal sexual conduct.
As part of a plea agreement prosecutors will drop four counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct, two counts of second-degree criminal sexual conduct, five counts of possessing child sexually abusive material, and a single count of producing or making child sexually abusive material. Prosecutors will also recommend that Potts be sentenced to a minimum sentence not to exceed four years and three months.
Saginaw County Sheriff's Detective David Kerns has said the victim, now 25, has told police that Potts began sexually assaulting her in December 1995, when she was 9 years old.


(Holland-Apartment Fire)
Dozens of residents were evacuated when a fire broke out at an apartment complex in Holland Wednesday.
The Department of Public Safety reports that personnel from five area departments were called to the Harbor Village Apartments shortly after 10 o'clock yesterday morning to find a second floor unit ablaze.
45 of those living in the building, along with pets and animals got out safely and fire crews had the fire out within an hour of arriving on the scene.
Two firefighters were injured when the ceiling in the burning unit collapsed. They were treated and released for their injuries.
The American Red Cross and Holland Victim Services worked to find temporary shelter for displaced residents.
Fire officials are still investigating the cause of the blaze. Damage is estimated in excess of 250-thousand dollars.
(Walt Zerlaut, WGHN, Grand Haven)


(Thur Lottery)
Tonight's (Fri) Mega Millions jackpot is worth $70 (m) million dollars.
The winning numbers for the Midday 3 lottery on Thursday were: 7-6-6.
The winning numbers for the Midday 4 lottery were: 5-9-9-6.
The winning numbers for the Evening 3 lottery were: 7-5-8.
The winning numbers for the evening 4 lottery were: 7-8-3-8.
The winning numbers for the Fantasy 5 lottery were: 03-11-27-33-39.
The winning numbers for the Keno lottery were: 01, 02, 07, 10, 15, 17, 28, 34, 35, 36, 37, 40, 44, 48, 53, 59, 64, 65, 66, 72, 74, 77.
Saturday's Classic Lotto jackpot is projected to be four-point-two-five (m) million dollars.



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