Local News Archives

Berrien County Sheriff’s Deputies honored for livesaving efforts

Two deputies with the Berrien County Sheriff’s Department have received Lifesaving Awards for their efforts to revive a man in medical distress at the Niles police complex this month. Berrien County Sheriff’s Department Chief Deputy Robert Boyce told county commissioners Thursday Deputies Elizabeth Turner and Perry Godush were working at the complex on March 10 when a man in the holding cell turned blue.. ...Read Full Story

Parents of Oxford High School shooter to face trial

There are new developments in the Oxford High School shooting case. The Michigan Court of Appeals has ruled that there is enough evidence for the parents of Ethan Crumbly to stand trial on manslaughter charges. Attorneys for James and Jennifer Crumbley had appealed a decision from an Oakand County District Judge who said there was enough evidence for the Crumbleys to send the case to trial. In the ruling issued Thursday morning, the appeals courts judges say the Crumbleys were aware their son had been repeatedly experiencing significant episodes of hallucinations and extreme paranoia, but they purchased a handgun for him. Ethan Crumbley pleaded guilty to murdering four classmates last year. He’s scheduled to be sentenced in June.. ...Read Full Story

Arrest made after bomb threat at Coloma Township bank

A Coloma man is facing charges after making a bomb threat at the Fifth Third Bank in Coloma Township on Thursday. The Coloma Township Police Department says a call came around 9:20 a.m. that a man had gone into the bank and told employees he had a bomb and that everyone needed to get out. Arriving officers found the man standing outside the bank. When he saw them, he laid down on the ground with his hands behind his back. The suspect has been identified as John Richard LaPlante, Junior. He told officers he might have a bomb on him or there may be a bomb inside the bank. Coloma Township officers, along with Michigan State Police troopers and Berrien County Sherriff’s deputies, closed down the area and evacuated all the nearby businesses. The county bomb squad was brought in with a K9 and no bomb was found. LaPlante was taken into custody and lodged at the Berrien County Jail on a charge of making a false bomb threat. Police say there is no threat to the community.. ...Read Full Story

Karamo Doubles Down On Controversial Social Media Post

Following a controversial tweet from the Michigan Republican Party’s Facebook and Twitter accounts Wednesday comparing potential gun reform legislation to the Holocaust, party chairwoman Kristina Karamo held a press conference to address the ensuing outrage from both sides of the political aisle. Karamo, however, chose to double down on the message that was sent.. ...Read Full Story

South Haven To Add Bike Path On Aylworth Avenue

A new bike path will be under construction in South Haven along the south side of Aylworth Avenue. The work will start on Monday and is expected to take about four weeks. City officials say there will be some minor traffic delays as a result of the project. Prein & Newhof, the city’s engineering firm for the project, will have an inspector on site and can help with answering questions and facilitating jobsite construction issues with the construction contractor.. ...Read Full Story

Buchanan property added to National Register of Historic Places

A collection of buildings, campuses, and manufacturing grounds in Buchanan has been designated on the National Register of Historic Places. The Michigan State Historic Preservation Office has voted to designate the Clark Equipment Complex on the National Register, and it was officially listed on the register last week. Historic preservation consultant Kurt West Garner helped Buchanan as it sought the historic designation for the site. He says the site has housed dozens of buildings over the years as Clark became an international company throughout the last century. Why seek the historic designation?. ...Read Full Story

Whitmer: Democrats are delivering on gun reforms

As gun safety legislation heads toward approval in Lansing, Governor Gretchen Whitmer says Democrats are doing what they said they would do. Speaking to MSNBC’s Jen Psaki, Whitmer said with mass shootings happening just about every day, “the time for only thoughts and prayers is over.” She was asked why there’s no assault weapons ban in the package.. ...Read Full Story

Groups opposing potential restart of Palisades

Environmental Group Beyond Nuclear is among 185 organizations to have signed a letter to U.S. Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm asking that Holtec International not receive a more than $1 billion loan to restart the Palisades plant. Beyond Nuclear’s Kevin Kamps tells us not only is restarting an old, already shut down reactor a bad idea, but Holtec wants to build some new small modular reactors at the site.. ...Read Full Story

Michigan State Police Warn Of Spoofing Scam

Michigan State Police troopers don’t want you to get ripped off. Be on the lookout for a call from the Michigan State Police informing you of an investigation. The con artists will say if you want to stay out of jail, you’ll need to send them money. The trick is that the phone number looks like it’s coming from an official source. The scammer is actually using the spoofing technique.. ...Read Full Story

Market Van Buren Hosts 3rd Annual Municipal Summit

Market Van Buren has welcomed over 50 business leaders from Cass and Van Buren counties for their 3rd Annual Municipal Summit in Lawrence on Tuesday. The event was held at the Van Buren ISD Conference Center and discussed state and local grant opportunities along with helping leaders better educate themselves on how to apply and successfully receive the grants to improve their communities. At both the state and federal levels, there are what Market Van Buren calls “unprecedented amounts of money” available in the form of grants and strategic allocations. In Michigan alone, there are several billion dollars of unallocated money, some of which will be available to local communities in the form of grant dollars.. ...Read Full Story

South Haven Woman Celebrates 108th Birthday

A South Haven woman has celebrated her 108th birthday. Helen Sharp has been a resident of the city all 108 years and has been at South Haven Nursing and Rehab for the past three years. Family and friends held a party for her yesterday, with relative Glenn Crow saying her will to live is amazing. Sharp has said she wants to live to 110.. ...Read Full Story

Paquette concerned about effects of new gun bills

The Michigan State Legislature is moving toward passing a slew of new gun bills aimed at reducing gun-related crimes. Area Republicans say it’s too much and directed at the wrong people. This week the Michigan House is expected to approve legislation that includes universal background checks, gun storage requirements, and so-called red flag laws – where people with potentially violent behavior could have their guns temporarily removed by law enforcement. House Republican Brad Paquette who represents the area from Three Oaks to Dowagiac, opposes the bill and says the Red Flag law.. ...Read Full Story

Motivational speaker coming to Paw Paw High School for community presentation

Teen expert and motivational speaker Gabe Salazar is coming to Paw Paw High School to deliver a message to the community about making positive choices this month. The school district says he’ll give three presentations, to high school students, to middle school students, and then to the community at large. Paw Paw Public Schools Superintendent Rick Reo says with all the tough decisions teens have to make, Salazar’s “message of hope and making smart choices” will resonate with students. A grant from the Hispanic Leadership Institute makes the visit possible. According to his website, Salazar overcame obstacles of homelessness, hopelessness, and gang influence to become the first in his family to go to college. Now, he travels the world speaking to young people. The presentations will be March 23 at the high school with the engagement at 6 p.m. open to the public. It will be free and a $200 Walmart gift card will be given away.. ...Read Full Story

Sources: Special counsel claims Trump deliberately misled his attorneys about classified documents, judge wrote

Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images

(WASHINGTON) — Prosecutors in the special counsel’s office have presented compelling preliminary evidence that former President Donald Trump knowingly and deliberately misled his own attorneys about his retention of classified materials after leaving office, a former top federal judge wrote Friday in a sealed filing, according to sources who described its contents to ABC News.. ...Read Full Story

Big plans for Ox Creek, Hall Park in Benton Harbor

There are big plans to clean up and revitalize Ox Creek in Benton Harbor, and city commissioners heard about them this week. At a Monday meeting, the University of Michigan’s Craig Borum told commissioners the Ox Creek Partnership consists of himself, residents, commissioners, the EPA, and the Southwest Michigan Planning Commission. They’re developing a plan not only for the creek but also for Hall Park, which is next to the creek.. ...Read Full Story

Grants to enable new training of paramedics in Covert Township

Covert Township is the recipient of three grants to train new paramedics. With paramedics in short supply statewide, the funds through the EMS Workforce scholarship program of the Michigan Center for Rural Health will result in three students receiving $24,600 each for their education. The three students have been identified and are all with the Covert Township Fire Department. Miguel Llerena, Jazmin Cortez, and Jacquelin Zurwalski are expected to begin classes in September of this year. The Covert Township Fire Department is staffed by career firefighter/paramedics who are supplemented by part-time and paid-on-call firefighters. Covert Township also has several police officers cross-trained as firefighters who respond to fire and EMS calls while on patrol. The department takes around 700 calls per year.. ...Read Full Story

County road agencies meeting this week

Michigan’s county road agencies manage 75% of all roads in the state. This week, they’re meeting in Lansing to outline priorities and problems for the next year. Denise Donahue, CEO of the County Roads Association, said road funding, including new options for using federal aid, will help them reach their goals.. ...Read Full Story

One dead in Cass County crash

An Elkhart, Indiana man is dead following a crash in Cass County on Tuesday. The Cass County Sheriff’s Department says it happened on US-12 near Kensington Road around 5:30 a.m. 58-year-old Timothy Waudby of Elkhart was westbound on US-12 when his vehicle crossed the centerline and into oncoming traffic. It struck two other vehicles and Waudby was killed. The other drivers have been identified as 56-year-old Wayne Owdresky of Niles and 45-year-old Joshua Kronewitter of Niles. Both suffered minor injuries. Owdresky was treated at the scene while Kronewitter was taken by ambulance to South Bend Memorial Hospital. Drugs and alcohol are not believed to have been factors in the crash, which remains under investigation.. ...Read Full Story

Lions Club camp for disabled children seeking counselors, volunteers

The Lions and Lioness Clubs of Southwest Michigan are now signing up counselors for Camp Leo, an overnight summer camp experience for children ages 10 through 17 with developmental disabilities who live in Berrien, Cass, and Van Buren counties. The clubs have been running Camp Leo for decades with support from volunteers. Camp Leo Director Beth Helm tells us it offers the classic summer camp experience to kids who otherwise might never be able to have it.. ...Read Full Story

Buchanan Community Schools seeking bond

Voters in Buchanan Community Schools are being asked to support a $34.8 million bond proposal in the May election. Superintendent Patricia Robinson tells us the district is seeking to improve Moccasin Elementary School and Buchanan High School. For the elementary, she says improvements would include upgraded classrooms, ADA compliant restrooms, and improved security. The project would also include an addition.. ...Read Full Story

Walberg, Huizenga oppose EPA decision on air pollution in Southwest Michigan

Congressmen Bill Huizenga and Tim Walberg have sent a joint letter to the EPA regarding an agency decision on air pollution in southwest Michigan. They say the decision on nonattainment areas affecting Allegan, Berrien, and Muskegon counties could lead to increased regulation and damage to the region’s economy. The congressmen the EPA’s measurement of air pollution isn’t accurate because there are “strong indications that the actual source of the pollution is not in Allegan, Berrien, or Muskegon Counties, but industry heavy cities on the other side of Lake Michigan.” The two say the EPA must recognize that given these counties’ locations, weather factors likely brought the pollutants into the region from more major industrial areas like Chicago, Gary, and Milwaukee. The EPA decision means manufacturers in southwest Michigan could be penalized. Supporting Walberg and Huizenga is Cornerstone Alliance with President Rob Cleveland saying “Berrien County residents will suffer the consequences of actions from companies that are more than 100 miles away, and in completely different states.”. ...Read Full Story

Holtec meets with NRC to talk possible Palisades restart

Holtec International, the owner of the Palisades nuclear power plant, has been meeting with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission as it prepares to submit an application to restart the facility. Holtec’s Patrick O’Brien tells us while the company seeks a more than $1 billion loan from the U.S. Department of Energy to restart the plant, it also has to get NRC approval.. ...Read Full Story

Michigan Women Forward Announce Partnership

Michigan Women Forward announced a million dollar partnership with a local bank to help women and entrepreneurs of color start their businesses. Those qualified will have the chance to enter a $10-million micro-loan program in partnership with Huntington National Bank. Organizers say the program provides opportunities for those who are economically disadvantaged because of a lack of access to capital and credit.. ...Read Full Story

CS Mott Children’s Hospital Releases Parental Vaping Poll

If you’re a parent do you think you have realistic views on your kids’ exposure to vaping? A new national poll by the C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital National Poll on Children’s Health at the University of Michigan Health shows a gap. Sarah Clark is co-director of the poll and says four in five parents think their child understands the health risks of vaping.. ...Read Full Story

One Arrested For Benton Township Murder

A 57-year-old man is in the Berrien County Jail where he is awaiting arraignment on an open murder charge. Benton Township police say he allegedly shot and killed a 40-year-old man Sunday afternoon at a home in the 27-hundred block of Townline Road. The victim was pronounced dead when authorities arrived, and the suspect was arrested on the scene. No names have been released.. ...Read Full Story

Dam removal project in Niles receives accolades

Benton Harbor-based engineering firm Wightman has received an award for its work to remove an old dam in the Dowagiac River in Niles. Wightman received the Engineering Merit Award for its work on the Pucker Street Dam Removal and Dowagiac River Restoration project from the American Council of Engineering Companies of Michigan this month. Wightman civil engineer Suzannah Deneau told us this week the concrete dam was built in 1928 on top of a wooden dam built in 1894. The city of Niles used it to generate electricity before deciding to take it out in the 90s.. ...Read Full Story

Township planners considering marijuana ordinance, just in case

The Lincoln Township Planning Commission is considering a local ordinance to cover marijuana businesses, just in case such an ordinance is needed. The commission’s Marc Florian told the Lincoln Township Board of Trustees this past week although the township has opted out of allowing such businesses altogether, planners are thinking about what happens if they’re no longer allowed to do so.. ...Read Full Story

Commissioners waiting for return of Maids of the Mist fountain

Repairs to the Maids of the Mist fountain in St. Joseph have been delayed again. At a Monday meeting of the St. Joseph City Commission, Public Works Director Greg Grothous told commissioners the cost of the restoration has gone up due to the discovery of lead paint in the fountain’s interior and because the central support column needs to be reinforced. He told us the fountain is at McKay Lodge Conservation Laboratory in Ohio waiting for the work.. ...Read Full Story