Local News Archives

Spectrum Health Lakeland Announces First Baby Of 2019

The first baby born at The BirthPlace at Spectrum Health Lakeland in St. Joseph waited a little while to make his appearance. The hospital says Isai Balcazar was born at 8:58 p.m. on New Year’s Day to Enrique and Itzel Balcazar of Hartford. He weighed 8 pounds, 5 ounces and is 18 and three-quarter inches long. The Lakeland Auxiliary kept up the tradition of providing the family with a gift basket full of baby items valued at $100. In the last fiscal year, 1,630 babies were born in St. Joseph and Niles in the Spectrum Health Lakeland system.. ...Read Full Story

Family Dog Killed In Geneva Township House Fire

Firefighters with South Haven Area Emergency Services began 2019 the same way they ended 2018, battling a house fire. They were called to a house in Geneva Township around 10:15 last night when the homeowner returned to find smoke near a wood burning stove in the basement. By the time firefighters got there, the flames had spread and were shooting through the roof, and a family dog died in the fire. SHAES Chief Ronald Wise tells us water had to be shuttled in to the scene, which made the battle challenging. None of the home’s occupants were hurt.. ...Read Full Story

Minimum Wage Increase Won’t Take Effect Until Late March

For those hoping for a hike in the state’s minimum wage at the start of the year as some reports had indicated, there is disappointment. Michigan’s minimum wage will increase by 20¢ an hour, but not until late March. At that point, it will go up to $9.45, up from $9.25, with the boost comes amid political wrangling that’s expected to continue into court.. ...Read Full Story

Report On Missed Votes In Lansing

The state lawmakers who represented southwest Michigan in Lansing during the most recent legislative session get gold stars for attendance. According to the Mackinac Center for Public Policy’s annual report on missed votes by lawmakers, state Senator John Proos and state Representatives Kim LaSata, Dave Pagel, and Beth Griffin missed zero votes in 2018. State Senator Tonya Schuitmaker missed 24 out of more than 1,600 roll calls taken in the Senate. The Mackinac Center’s Jack McHugh tells WSJM News the organization started tracking missed votes in 2003.. ...Read Full Story

Man Injured In Shooting New Year’s Day In Benton Harbor

A 35-year-old Benton Harbor man is being treated at Spectrum Health Lakeland after being shot several times during an argument at a house party in the early morning hours of New Year’s Day. James Parker-Hersey was immediately taken into surgery upon arrival at the hospital, and his condition is not being disclosed. Benton Harbor Public Safety Director Dan McGinnis says the suspect managed to get away from the scene, which was a house party in the 100 block of Apple Street, before officers arrived. He adds the shooting does not appear to be linked to the murder earlier on New Year’s Eve about two miles away in St. Joseph Township. Benton Harbor Public Safety is urging anyone who knows the identity and location of the suspect to call them or Crime Stoppers.. ...Read Full Story

Active Duty Army Sergeant Killed While Home On Leave

St. Joseph Township police are investigating the New Year’s Eve murder of an active duty soldier. 23-year-old Tyrone Hassell the Third was shot several times at a home in the two-thousand block of Colfax Avenue just after 11 p.m. Monday and died after being taken to Spectrum Health Lakeland. According to his Facebook page, Hassell was a sergeant in the U.S. Army and had attended Grand Valley State University prior to entering the military in 2015. Hassell was home on leave from the military when he was killed. Township police received help from Michigan State Police, the Berrien County Sheriff’s Department and Homicide Task Force, and St. Joseph Public Safety, and no arrests have been made. Anyone with information is urged to speak up by calling St. Joseph Township police or Crime Stoppers.. ...Read Full Story