Morning Briefing Sept. 17, 2021: Michigan Rep. Jewell Jones to undergo mental health evaluation amid charges, dad files lawsuit against Mount Pleasant Public Schools after daughter’s hair cut by staff

Here are this morning’s top stories

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Michigan State Rep. Jewell Jones to undergo mental health evaluation; attorney withdraws from case

Michigan State Rep. Jewell Jones (D-Inkster) has been ordered by a judge to undergo a mental health evaluation as he faces several charges stemming from an April arrest for alleged drunk driving.

Jones was removed from all Michigan House committee assignments this week after the Livingston County Sheriff said he had a handcuff key taped to his foot when he was admitted to the Livingston County Jail. He had been sentenced to jail Tuesday after he was accused of violating his bond a third time. He now faces two felonies accusing him of trying to escape custody.

See more here.

Lawsuit seeks $1M after Michigan teacher cuts girl’s hair

The father of a 7-year-old Michigan girl whose hair was cut by a teacher without her parents’ permission has filed a $1 million lawsuit against the school district, a librarian and a teacher’s assistant.

The lawsuit was filed Tuesday in federal court in Grand Rapids against Mount Pleasant Public Schools. It alleges that the biracial girl’s constitutional rights were violated, racial discrimination, ethnic intimidation, intentional infliction of emotional distress and assault and battery.

Read more here.

🚨 25-year-old man shot after argument in Downtown Detroit, police say

Grosse Pointe Park pharmacy owner, 4 others charged with running Wayne County prescription drug ring

Officials have charged a Grosse Pointe Park pharmacy owner, a Detroit doctor and three others with running a prescription drug ring in several cities around Wayne County.

Hasna Bashir Iwas, 60, of New Baltimore, is accused of operating a prescription drug ring in Detroit, Grosse Pointe Park, River Rouge and other cities. She worked alongside Detroit Dr. Otis Crawford and three other people who were charged, but Crawford died of natural causes before his sentencing, authorities said.

See the report here.

🔒Boomerangers: Even more young adults in Michigan living with parents

Home sweet home. But whose home is it really?

A survey of more than 3,500 people ages 18-35 revealed that one in three has moved back in with their parents over the past year in Michigan. That’s on pace with the national average of this trend over the past year -- 36% of these young adults nationwide have moved back to their parents’ home, according to the survey.

In 2020, data from the Pew Research Center showed the share of 18- to 29-year-olds living with their parents became a majority since U.S. coronavirus cases began spreading earlier that year. Pew’s data shows those figures surpassed the previous peak during the Great Depression era.

See the data here (for Insiders).

State Board of Education VP urging Michigan governor to issue mask mandate for school

The vice president of the State Board of Education and Superintendent is calling on Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s administration to issue a mask mandate for schools.

In a letter to Michigan Department of Health of Human Services Director Elizabeth Hertel, board vice president Pamela Pugh -- a Democrat from Saginaw -- implored Hertel to issue a mask mandate before outbreaks send kids back to remote learning.

See the story here.

🚨 Detroit Police Department redoubling community policing efforts

FDA panel is first key test for Biden COVID-19 booster plan

The Biden administration’s embattled plan to dispense COVID-19 booster shots to most Americans faced its first major hurdle Friday as a government advisory panel met to decide whether to endorse extra doses of the Pfizer vaccine.

Scientists inside and outside the government have been divided in recent days over the need for boosters and who should get them, and the World Health Organization has strongly objected to rich nations giving a third round of shots when poor countries don’t have enough vaccine for their first.

Read more here.

Old bridge leaves Oxford Township residents without garbage pickup

With beautiful sunsets, sparkling waters and a chorus of cranes, there are many benefits to living on the Maloney Avenue peninsula, but the Maloney Bridge is not one of them.

The 50-year-old wooden bridge is failing and the weight limit has been reduced to 9 tons by the Road Commission for Oakland County. It will be replaced next year, which means no school buses or garbage trucks can cross.

See the story here.

🚨 Who is Gabby Petito, the woman who mysteriously disappeared?

Weather: Beautiful Friday with late-night shower chances

Here is the weather forecast for Metro Detroit.
Here is the weather forecast for Metro Detroit.

COVID in Michigan 🦠

Michigan reported 6,604 new cases of COVID-19 and 62 virus-related deaths Wednesday -- an average of 3,302 cases over a two-day period.

Wednesday’s update brings the total number of confirmed COVID cases in Michigan to 983,109, including 20,597 deaths. These numbers are up from 976,505 cases and 20,535 deaths, as of Monday.

Note: The state of Michigan posted that only 44 new deaths had been identified since the last update, but Monday’s report stated 20,535 people had died from COVID, and Wednesday’s report showed that number had risen to 20,597. That suggests there have been 62 new COVID deaths identified between Monday and Wednesday.

Testing has increased to around 20,000 diagnostic tests reported per day on average, with the 7-day positive rate at 9.39% as of Wednesday, slightly higher than the previous week. The positive test rate has been steadily climbing since the end of June, when it was at its lowest. Hospitalizations have been steadily increasing for several weeks.

Cases are rising again in Michigan. The state’s 7-day moving average for daily cases was 2,685 on Wednesday -- a significant jump since the beginning of July. The 7-day death average was 25 on Wednesday. The state’s fatality rate is 2.1%. The state also reports “active cases,” which were listed at 66,300 on Wednesday.

Michigan has reported more than 9.7 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine administered as of Monday, with 66.6% of 16+ residents having received at least one dose while 58.1% of 16+ residents are considered fully vaccinated.

Here’s a look at more of the data:

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