TUESDAY NEWS HIT - Due to what they say is a lack of progress, two members of Detroit's Reparations Task Force resigned.
Co-chair Lauren Hood and member Maurice Weeks announced their departures over the weekend.
The official goal of the task force is to develop recommendations for economic development and housing programs that address historical discrimination against the city’s Black community, with cash payments also possible.
"I had originally anticipated those who stepped up to the plate and said they wanted to serve the Reparations Task Force - I thought they would see it through," Detroit City Councilmember Mary Waters said. "So, I was very, very shocked by that."
Sources say some members were also frustrated by what they call a lack of support from the council.
Troy Target assault suspect to be sentenced
A man who attacked a woman outside a Troy Target over the summer is scheduled to be sentenced Tuesday.
Andrew Hall, 31, is already in prison for a murder that happened days after the assault. He pleaded guilty to the murder and has pleaded guilty to numerous charges, including strangulation, unlawful imprisonment, attempted carjacking, and aggravated assault in connection with the July 7 assault.
Authorities say a woman was attacked by Hall while she got into her vehicle outside the Target store at 1301 Coolidge Rd. in Troy. Police said the victim fought back and alerted someone who was nearby. When that witness yelled at Hall and ran toward the victim, Hall fled.
On July 11, while wanted for the assault, Hall murdered 40-year-old Lisa Moffett in Detroit.
Body found by hunter confirmed to be missing woman
Genesee County Sheriff Chris Swanson confirmed Monday that a body found last week was Kelly McWhirter.
Swanson said Wednesday that the body was believed to be McWhirter after it was found by a hunter who was training his birding dog in the area of Ryan and Shannon roads in St. Charles. However, the identity needed to be confirmed, and was done so by using dental records.
McWhirter, 60, and her ex-husband Steven Higgins were reported missing more than a month ago. Authorities believed foul play was involved after finding a bloody scene at the couple's Flushing home. Shortly after the pair was reported missing, Higgins shot and killed himself during a traffic stop, while McWirther was still missing.
Woman caught stealing from Walmart while 75 cops were there
A thief picked a bad time to try to steal $725 worth of merchandise from a Michigan Walmart.
Police say about 75 cops were at the store in Livingston County's Genoa Township for a Shop With A Cop event last weekend when the 62-year-old woman walked out with a cart full of stolen items and started loading up her vehicle.
The police at the store were parading in the lot with lights and sirens on, making it pretty clear they were at the store. Authorities say the suspect was parked next to a police cruiser, too.
"I do have to say it surprised me because when I'm driving a patrol car, people slow down," Michigan State Police Lt. Rene Gonzalez said. "When you see 75 cops in the store, I mean, I don't know if maybe they thought we were too busy."
Detroit on pace to have lowest homicide rate in 60 years
Based on current numbers, Detroit is on pace to have the lowest murder rate in 60 years.
Homicides from Jan. 1 through Nov. 30 are down 18% from the same time last year, according to data from city officials.
"This is the day we’ve been waiting for, for a long time," Mayor Mike Duggan said.
A partnership between city and county leaders that was formed by Detroit Police Chief James White is being praised for the reduction in crime. The goal was to return the criminal justice system in Detroit and Wayne County to pre-Covid operations.
"We know why violent crime soared in America. The criminal courts shut down - you could not put 12 jurors in a room," Duggan said.
He said judges worked hard to bring the number of cases waiting to be heard down.
"The circuit court backlog went down from 4,000 felons out waiting for trial to 1,400," Duggan said.
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There will be snow showers Tuesday, though it won't accumulate much.
What else we're watching
- Authorities are looking for additional victims of a Madison Heights man accused of sending sexually explicit photos to a 12-year-old girl.
- The Wayne County Sheriff's Office is warning people about scams that increase during the holiday season, especially ones where scammers demand money.
- A White Lake teen was found dead in a small pond on Sunday after running from police over the weekend. Early that morning investigators say the 16-year-old and another male were seen climbing down from the roof of the Tractor Supply Company on Highland Road in White Lake Township.
- Three suspects are facing charges after an armed robbery and police chase that started on Michigan Avenue in Canton.
- Grand River Brewery has expanded into Metro Detroit. The restaurant with a focus on Michigan-made products opens soon in Clawson.
US Transportation czar Buttigieg targets freight rail industry after toxic trainwrecks
Since 2015, there have been more than 170 hazardous material train derailments in the country -- totaling more than $2 million carloads of dangerous materials.
US Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg regulates air traffic controllers and there have been recent reports that some are drunk on the job.
He's also trying to force the airlines to eliminate those bogus fees hidden in your tickets. But his number one target right now is the freight rail industry.
The Norfolk Southern train wreck in E. Palestine, Ohio, included toxic chemical cars scattered all over the place, endangering the health and safety of nearby residents in Ohio.