Pandemic health order lifted • 'White Boy Rick' arrested • Warren honors vet who broke military color barrier

Hundreds of cases are confirmed a day and while monthly death totals still come in by the hundreds, but as far as the government is concerned, the COVID-19 public health emergency is over.

The federal emergency order that's been in effect since the onset of the pandemic in 2020 will expire on May 11. With it will go some health care coverage options as well as the availability of free COVID-19 tests from over the counter.

Among the biggest changes will be that some recipients covered by Medicaid will see certain waivers and flexibilities within the program end. In Michigan, hundreds of thousands of residents could be impacted.

The federal health department said the government had originally expanded access in a broad fashion to ensure as many people as possible were covered. The measures enabled the country's health care system to adapt to the strain that COVID-19 put on its infrastructure.

Given the need for capacity within hospitals has fallen, many of those pandemic-era waivers are ending. The number of Michigan residents dropped from Medicaid, according to Bridge Magazine, could be as high as 400,000.

The emergency order's expiration means governments will resume periodic reviews of the recipients that have signed up for coverage, meaning individuals will need to show they qualify for the policy.

Patients that use Medicaid should have received notice from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services about the change. More information about coverage can be found here.

Finding Covid tests

Over-the-counter Covid tests will also no longer be required to be fully subsidized by private insurance. Anyone purchasing them may need to shell out money to cover part of the cost of the tests.

However, in Michigan there are some services that will continue offering the tests, including Project Act, which provides free at-home test kits to eight states. 

Getting the tests mailed to one's house is easy. Users just need to input their zip code into this website.

Learn more here.

Richard Wershe Jr. arrested after assaulting girlfriend

It's been almost three years since Richard Wershe Jr. was freed from prison following a three-decade stint behind bars after he served as an federal informant. On Tuesday, however, Wershe Jr who used to go by ‘White Boy Rick’, was back behind bars after allegedly attacking his girlfriend during a fight at his condo in Miami.

According to Miami Police, Wershe attacked his girlfriend of four months during a fight at his condo after they got into an argument during sex. The woman said the attack happened on Saturday and that she waited to report it because of her immigration status. Federal law protects victims of crimes, regardless if they are legal residents. 

In the police report obtained by FOX 2, Wershe and the woman were having sex when he said another woman's name. She tried to get away but said Wershe grabbed her arm and snatched a diamond bracelet and necklace that he had bought her.

She got away from Wershe's grasp and threw a shoe at him but missed. She said that Wershe then caught up to her and punched her. A witness reported seeing Wershe punch the woman. When Wershe was arrested, police said he had keys to a Lamborghini, nearly $11,000 in cash, a gold Rolex, two gold chains, and a set of AirPods. 

Read the full story here.

Warren honors vet who broke U.S. Military color barrier

A 100-year-old old Marine veteran who was instrumental in helping break the color barrier in the military was honored by the city of Warren on Wednesday. "It always pays off in the long run," Lee Newby said.

Newby was one of the first Black Marines to enlist in the 1940s and fight in World War II. "I was drafted into the service in 1942 at the county building in Detroit. Went from there to Camp Lejeune in North Carolina," he said.

He was a member of the Montford Point Marines, a unit that helped desegregate U.S. federal facilities in 1949. Wednesday's celebration started at Newby's house then went to Downtown Detroit, where part of the city was shut down in his honor. He also received a medal. 

"I appreciate all the people who helped me. Appreciate what I’ve done for the country. Help me celebrate my birthday. That was nice," Newby said. Newby's family said he suffered burns on 60% of his body because of the war. They are working to get him a Purple Heart medal.

Detroit community leaders work to keep children safe

Warm temperatures are associated with a higher rate of crime in Southeast Michigan and this year appears to be no different. The worrying trend has community leaders working to keep younger kids as far from the violence as they can. 

"We are going to organize marches that the kids can march with their toys, and we’re going to empower them to speak. They want to speak," said Pastor Joyce Branham. "They want to live and enjoy their life. And one of our mottos is live and take your kids to Disney World."

So could Detroit be a "toy city" instead of a "gun city?" That's what Branham is asking. 

"We never had this problem before," she said. "The availability of guns and people with mental issues, all types of emotional issues and rather than sitting down and praying over a situation, they pick up a weapon. But I think we can de-escalate this."

Man charged in deadly gas station shooting

A man accused of shooting three people, one fatally, because he was mad at a Detroit gas station last week is facing charges.

Samuel Anthony McCray, 27, is charged with first-degree murder, two counts of assault with intent to murder, and three counts of felony firearm and felon in possession of a firearm.

According to the Wayne County Prosecutor's Office, McCray tried to leave a  Mobil gas station on McNichols near Lodge Freeway around 3 a.m. Saturday with $4 worth of items after the purchase was declined. The clerk locked the door, locking McCray and other customers inside the store.

"The guy like, 'If you don't unlock this door, I'm gonna shoot everybody in here,'" said customer David Langston. "'Please man don't shoot us, we don't got nothing to do with this, man.' And my friend said something like, ‘Man, he ain’t gonna shoot us, let us up out of here.' And he started shooting."

Read more here.

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Daily Forecast

Ready for a taste of summer? We're clip the low 80s for the hottest day of the year Thursday. Enjoy the dry conditions before rain moves back in Friday.

What else we're watching

  1. The Detroit Board of Police Commissioners will host a hearing for feedback on a plan to expand license plate reader technology used by the police department. The plan would double the number in use.
  2. Lawmakers and registered nurses are set to introduce a new package of bills that would limit the number of patients a nurse can be assigned, curb excessive mandatory overtime, and require hospitals to disclose staffing levels.
  3. Controlled burns in Detroit that were scheduled for April are set to begin May 11. Expect prescribed burns at three neighborhood parks: Palmer Park, Riverside Park, and Rouge Park.
  4. CEOs from Henry Ford Health, Lear, and Lawrence Tech University will speak at the Detroit Economic Club as part of its "Future to Work" series that helps prepare workers for technology's impacts on the industry.
  5. The Detroit Lions will play the first game of the season on a Thursday for the first time ever, according to the website They'll face the Kansas City Chiefs on Sept. 7.

VP Kamala Harris to become 1st woman to deliver West Point commencement speech

Vice President Kamala Harris will be the first woman to deliver a commencement speech at a West Point graduation ceremony, White House officials said.

Harris will deliver the keynote address on May 27 at the U.S. Military Academy for the Class of 2023.

"We are honored to have the Vice President as our commencement speaker," Lt. Gen. Steven W. Gilland, the U.S. Military Academy’s 61st superintendent said in a statement. "As an accomplished leader who has achieved significant milestones throughout her career, we look forward to her inspiring remarks to our cadets."