THURSDAY NEWS HIT - A 10-month-old girl is at Children's Hospital after a headstone fell on her at a Detroit cemetery.
Jessica McFadden and her family were at Gethsemane Cemetery to pay respects to her grandmother on Mother's Day. When she placed her daughter, Melani, in front of the headstone for a photo, it fell on her.
"That headstone was not properly placed," McFadden said. "I didn’t know if my baby was alive under there. I couldn’t hear my baby, I couldn’t see my baby."
When she got the stone off of Melani, she saw that the child was hurt.
"She had a huge knot, and it was bleeding on the back of her head, and at that moment my daughter started vomiting, and she went out," McFadden said.
Melani was rushed to the hospital, where she was diagnosed with a fractured skull.
"I’m just really angry, I guess you could say. I’m really angry that this happened to my baby, and I wasn’t there to do anything about it," said Melani's father, Jeremy McFadden.
Attorney Jonathan Marko is representing the McFadden family. He said that in addition to the headstone not being properly installed, the cemetery is not being properly maintained because of short staffing.
"It’s not like lightning struck and this tombstone suddenly fell down. This tombstone was a disaster waiting to happen," Marko said. "We have preliminary information that because of the staffing shortages they had to cut back on what they were able to do, but this is what happens when we cut funding and put a bare-bones operation in our public services – they don’t operate the way that they’re supposed to do operate."
The family said it appeared other headstones had also fallen over.
The City of Detroit owns the cemetery and provided a statement saying in part:
"The city extends its well wishes to the family and hopes for a full recovery for the child.
"Headstones are installed by third party companies hired by individual families. The cemetery operator has no record of any concerns about this specific headstone being in danger of falling, nor had it fallen and been previously reset."
The McFadden family said the headstone was installed about five years ago. They’re working to confirm who installed it.
"Because of poor maintenance – this could’ve been all prevented. Had it been properly placed, properly kept, whatever could’ve been done, this could’ve been totally prevented," Jessica McFadden said.
Michigan bans bird shows at fairs over avian flu concerns
Michigan officials have temporarily banned all poultry and waterfowl exhibitions amid the avian flu outbreak that’s spreading quickly across the U.S. and has prompted farms to euthanize millions of birds.
Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development State Veterinarian Dr. Nora Wineland and Director Gary McDowell announced the ban Tuesday, saying it will last until Michigan goes 30 days without a case of the avian flu.
"By taking this step now, it is hoped that poultry exhibitors can still participate in fair activities once circumstances have improved," Wineland said in a statement. Avian flu can spread be spread from flock to flock, including wild birds, and through contact with infected poultry, equipment and the clothing of caretakers. The state says bringing poultry from different flocks to one location, like at a county fair, creates a "significant risk" for the animals.
In 2015, avian flu prompted a similar ban on Michigan poultry shows. It impacted nearly 4,000 youth who participate in poultry 4-H projects at county fairs throughout the state. The latest outbreak of avian flu hit North America in December and has led to the culling of about 37 million chickens and turkeys in U.S. farms since February. More than 35 million birds in flocks across 30 states have been affected.
What's next in Oxford after board rejects AG's offer to probe
Parents are growing upset over the Oxford School District board's decision to reject an offer from the Michigan Attorney General to investigate the mass shooting last year. "You gotta drive forward to fix this," said Buck Myre, father of shooting victim Tate.
Instead, the district said it will use "more holistic third-party reviews" to look at the district's three-year plan and the Nov. 30, 2021, shooting that left four students dead. But according to FOX 2's Charlie Langton, facts about the shooting will come out whether the AG investigates the incident or not. Langton pointed to the five civil lawsuits, two criminal cases, and numerous Freedom of Information Act requests.
"We have no alternative but to move forward in terms of the civil cases and prove, that what everybody already knows, and that is that Oxford is in part responsible for this tragedy, so that it never happens again," said attorney Ven Johnson, who represents victims of the shooting.
The district said the ongoing criminal cases stemming from the shooting have delayed the release of information that could help the review. Because of this, the school board said the third-party review won't happen until have the trials of suspected shooter Ethan Crumbley and his parents, James and Jennifer Crumbley.
5th grader ingest weed gummites at Livonia school
It was just three weeks ago that FOX 2 reported on Grand River Academy in Livonia where a kindergartner brought a margaritas and Dixie cups to school for snack time. Now, at the same school, two 11-year-olds were hospitalized after one of them brought marijuana edibles to school.
Krstle Morton contacted FOX 2 after learning her son was given a marijuana edible in their 5th grade classroom. She said her son didn't know that the ‘funny' feeling he was experiencing was a high from the THC in the edibles.
The mother told FOX 2 another 5th grader brought the gummies to school on Monday and didn't warn her son what they were. Two fifth graders were hospitalized at Beaumont after ingesting the drugs and police have opened an investigation.
This is the second time in two weeks that a Michigan student brought weed gummies to school. A similar situation played out at an elementary school near Flint and the mom in that case was charged with second-degree child abuse.
Detroit and Berkley police investigate teen's murder
A tragic and complicated story is forming out of Detroit where the body of a teen matching the descriptions of a missing girl from Berkley was found in a car, shot multiple times. The victim may have been connected to a reported carjacking as well since the car she was found in was the same vehicle a man reported stolen.
In a release sent by Detroit police, a 20-year-old man had picked up a woman in his 2013 Chevy Malibu. He drove to the a block of Clarita when the woman asked him to stop so she could use the restroom.
While walking away, two armed men approached the car and robbed the man. When he was complied with the suspects, both men and the woman got into the car and drove off.
Berkley Police told FOX 2 that the description of the girl matched a teenager who has been missing for three weeks but would not confirm her name. Police had been investigating that same teen in connection to the carjacking on Monday night. Anyone with information is asked to call Detroit Police or Crimestoppers at 1-800-SPEAK-UP.
What else we're watching
- Three Michigan high school students were selected as U.S. Presidential scholars. Kids from Ann Arbor, Interlochen, and Plymouth will be honored over the summer with an online recognition program.
- AAA says another round of testing from the group found more inconsistencies with the performance of driving assistance systems found in vehicles today, resulting in crashes with simulated cars and bicyclists.
- The region's largest career showcase will discuss growing industries and employment opportunities for thousands of local students and job seekers. It's hosted by Michigan Works! Southeast. Those interested in attending the event can go to mwse.org/ct2 for more info.
- The deadline for entrepreneurs to enter the $100,000 Comerica Hatch Detroit Contest is quickly approaching. Those looking for funding for a retail storefront in Detroit, Highland Park, or Hamtramck can submit their business plans to the website no later than midnight tonight. Go to HatchDetroit.com for more.
- Michigan reported another 27,000 COVID-19 cases Wednesday. Case rates are up but deaths remain low due to vaccine rates in the state.
Live on FOX 2
More summer weather is on the way with the hottest day of the week expected to be Thursday. Plan for close to the mid-80s and lots of sun. Temperatures won't be quite as high over the weekend, but they'll be pretty close.
Baby formula shortage: Which foods and techniques boost breast milk production?
Baby formula is the latest staple to be hit by supply chain shortages in the U.S.
Parents of newborns and babies under six months old have taken to social media to share their concerns after seeing barren store shelves.
Behind the scenes, online inquiries on how to "increase breast milk" have become a top search term in 38 states, according to recent data on Google Trends.
In particular, searchers are looking into foods and methods that increase breast milk supply.