Kalamazoo County hires finance director amid money issues in treasurer’s office
KALAMAZOO, MI -- Kalamazoo County has hired a director of finance, filling a vacancy that has been open since July. Ryan Post was hired as director of finance and Chad Ensign was hired as director of animal services and enforcement. Morse left the county for a job at Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo County Spokeswoman Taylor Koopman said. “I am beyond thrilled to return to Kalamazoo County where my career kicked off fresh out of college,” Post said. Kalamazoo County officials are working with Maner Costerisan, an accounting firm, to prepare for the county’s annual audit.mlive.com
Active shooter report discredited in 2 minutes at Portage high school
PORTAGE, MI – It took about two minutes to discredit a report of a shooting at Portage Northern High School on Tuesday morning. The caller claimed multiple shots were fired, a joint news release from the city of Portage and Portage Public Schools said. The FBI and Michigan State Police are involved in the investigation at Portage, VanderWiere said. Portage Northern High School enrolled 1,289 students the 2021-22 school year, according to most recent state data. “We’re lucky to have the partnership that we do with the Portage Public Safety Department.mlive.com
Jury fails to reach verdict in fatal Kalamazoo shooting
KALAMAZOO, MI – A jury could not decide whether to acquit or convict a man of murder after hours of deliberation. Kalamazoo County Circuit Judge Paul Bridenstine declared the mistrial on Monday, Feb. 6, Kalamazoo County Chief Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Jeff Williams said. The jury deliberated the afternoon of Feb. 2, on Feb. 3 and Feb. 6 before the mistrial was declared. Whetstone’s girlfriend, Giana Lambert-Coleman, testified during the case, saying that Hargrave shot Whetstone. Whetstone lived in Albion for 16 years before moving to Battle Creek with his mother and later moving to Kalamazoo, according to his obituary.mlive.com
Kalamazoo Humane Society receives $200K grant; promotes employee to new coordinator role
KALAMAZOO, MI -- The Kalamazoo Humane Society has received a $200,000 grant from PetSmart Charities, according to a news release from the charity. The $200,000 grant to the Kalamazoo Humane Society will support the expansion of outreach services to underserved and unhoused pet owners. The money is meant to help the Kalamazoo Humane Society work in the community and offer easier access to critical veterinary services and pet resources. Through the grant, the Kalamazoo Humane Society promoted Alejandra Morales, a former client services team member, to the new outreach coordinator position. The Kalamazoo Humane Society was formed in 1897, to address concerns about the inhumane treatment of animals and children in Kalamazoo.mlive.com
State rejects attempt to recall Kalamazoo County treasurer
DELTA TOWNSHIP, MI – An attempt to remove Kalamazoo County treasurer Thomas Whitener from his position after allegations of mismanaging money will not go forward. The Board of State Canvassers, a four-member panel whose duties include certifying state- and county-level recalls, voted unanimously Wednesday to reject a citizen’s petition to recall Whitener, ruling it did not sufficiently explain how Whitener’s conduct in office warrants a recall. Michigan law requires recall petitions to meet standards of fact and clarity in their reasoning for why a public official should face removal at the voting booth. The county also hired an accounting firm to increase accountability and transparency inside the treasurer’s office. Foust’s recall request, however, did not sufficiently describe why Whitener should be removed from office.mlive.com
Kalamazoo man accused of killing WMU student seeks insanity defense
KALAMAZOO, MI – A man accused of killing one woman and shooting others was ordered to undergo a mental competency evaluation. A 35-year-old pregnant Kalamazoo woman and her 18-month-old infant were injured in the shooting. A competency evaluation must find that he understands the charges against him and can assist his attorney in a meaningful way, per state law. Related: Kalamazoo man accused of murder heading toward jury trialRogers is charged with open murder and three counts of assault with intent to murder. Related: WMU student fatally shot was always rooting for others, Kalamazoo cheer coach saysRogers is accused of shooting into the truck.mlive.com
Jury trial starts for Kalamazoo man accused of killing 18-year-old
KALAMAZOO, MI – A jury trial started Tuesday for a man accused of shooting and killing an 18-year-old man. Maliek Rasheid-Rodney Hargrave, now 25, is accused of shooting and killing Jason Whetstone, 18, in the 100 block of East Maple Street, east of South Burdick Street on Oct. 2, 2021. A jury heard testimony from witnesses as a trial started Jan. 31, in Kalamazoo County Circuit Court. On East Maple Street, Ostrander found several people gathered around a man on the ground, he testified. Whetstone was not involved in any gangs, his mother Lakisha Whetstone testified.mlive.com
Van Buren County administrator leaving for Kalamazoo County government post
VAN BUREN COUNTY, MI -- Van Buren County Administrator Ryan Post is leaving his position in March to become the Kalamazoo County finance director, Van Buren County leaders said. Post is expected to end the administrator’s job on March 24. Van Buren County commissioners on Wednesday, Jan. 25 accepted Post’s resignation and appointed Charles Norton, the county’s information technology director, as the interim deputy county administrator. According to the Kalamazoo County web site, the finance director position is listed as vacant. Amanda Morse had served in the position until recently.mlive.com
Kalamazoo County visitor spending hits all-time high of $585 million
KALAMAZOO, MI – Kalamazoo County is in the money. Spending by visitors to Kalamazoo County reached an all-time high of $585 million in 2021, and the Southwest region had the fastest growth in visitor spending of all regions in the state, according to visitor spending figures from Travel Michigan. Visitor spending in Kalamazoo County also exceeded pre-pandemic levels, with 2021 figures up 16% compared to 2019. Here are the top 10 Michigan counties for visitor spending in 2021, per the MEDC:Wayne County: $5.5 billion Oakland County: $2.5 billion Kent County: $1.5 billion Macomb County: $1.1 billion Washtenaw County: $687 million Kalamazoo County: $585 million Genesee County: $511 million Emmet County: $494 million Grand Traverse County: $493 million Ingham County: $433 millionVisitor spending is a measure of the economic impact of tourism on local economies. Visitor spending creates job and entrepreneurship opportunities and helps sustain the businesses that residents enjoy, Discover Kalamazoo said.mlive.com
KRESA seeking renewal of countywide tax to help pay for school district operations
The Kalamazoo millage first passed in 2005. “In Portage, proceeds from the Regional Enhancement Millage are used to fill gaps in state funding to support student instruction,” said Randy Van Antwerp, president of the Portage school board and KRESA board member. He said the impact of that legislation on Portage schools is approximately $90,000. The KRESA Board of Education will meet Thursday, Jan. 26 at 5:30 p.m. Portage passed the resolution Monday. Kalamazoo, which receives about $4.6 million annually with the existing millage, school board also approved a resolution this month.mlive.com
Murder trial begins for driver accused of going 115 mph before crash killing Schoolcraft couple
KALAMAZOO, MI -- A jury will decide if the driver in a double fatal crash committed murder. Phillips is accused of driving 115 mph in a Dodge Durango about 5 seconds before the fatal impact, Koches said. The defense attorney countered that the crash was an accident and his client is not guilty of murder. She had been driving for most of the trip, but Phillips took over driving about 30 minutes before the crash, Bland said. Phillips tried to stop and avoid the crash, Bland said.mlive.com
Developers who want to fight Kalamazoo County’s housing crisis can now apply for funding
KALAMAZOO, MI -- Housing developers and nonprofits wanting to fight the affordable housing crisis can now apply for funding from the Kalamazoo County housing millage. The second year of the housing millage was levied on Dec. 1, 2022. In 2022, the first year of millage disbursements, the housing millage provided more than $6.7 million to housing development and supportive services for multifamily, single family, creative projects and rehab. “Kalamazoo County has made great progress the first year of the housing millage and the program has leveraged over $100 million in outside funding to expand affordable housing,” Kalamazoo County Housing Director Mary Balkema said in the news release. “Kalamazoo County is honored to be the only county in the state to levy a housing millage.”Related: New Kalamazoo County tax helps spark $114M in housing developmentsBoard of Commissioners Chair John Taylor said officials believe everyone should have access to safe, affordable housing.mlive.com
Kalamazoo Public Schools teacher accused of sexual assault
KALAMAZOO, MI – A Kalamazoo Public Schools elementary teacher is accused of sexual assault. Joel Patrick-Floyd Osborn, 44, of Kalamazoo, was arraigned Dec. 21, with one felony count of third-degree criminal sexual conduct with force or coercion, in Kalamazoo County District Court.mlive.com
Multiple guns fired leading up to fatal Kalamazoo shooting
KALAMAZOO, MI – Prior to being fatally shot, Aaron Lee Starling was holding an assault rifle, according to security camera footage. Two Kalamazoo Public Safety officers described the security camera footage and what led to the shooting during a preliminary examination late last year in Kalamazoo County District Court. There were multiple guns shot that night at On the Rocks, with most bullets fired into the air, KDPS Detective Sean Szekely testified. Starling had “beef” with multiple people at the liquor store, but none of those people were Powell, Szekely said. No one else in the security footage had similar hair or clothes to Powell that night, according to Anderson.mlive.com
New Kalamazoo County tax helps spark $114M in housing developments
The Kalamazoo County housing millage pumped more than $6.7 million into housing developments and supportive services in 2022, its first year, according to county figures provided to MLive/Kalamazoo Gazette. Kalamazoo County Housing Director Mary Balkema and city of Kalamazoo Mayor David Anderson both want more housing for low-income citizens. They acknowledge the need for housing at all income levels, and how building the lowest income housing brings challenges. Kalamazoo County Housing Director Mary Balkema speaks during the Kalamazoo County Commission meeting in Kalamazoo, Michigan on Tuesday, Feb. 1, 2022. Over the next 20 years, the plan states, two 60% AMI units and two 80% AMI units will remain.mlive.com
Kalamazoo County man turns $10 win into $500,000 jackpot
LANSING, MI -- A Kalamazoo County man who likes to play instant lottery tickets turned a minor $10 win into a major jackpot worth $500,000 playing the Michigan Lottery’s 5X Multiplier instant game. “I had a $10 winning ticket, so I used my winnings to purchase two 5X Multiplier tickets. When I scratched off one of the tickets and saw I’d won $500,000, I didn’t think it was real. For the latest on Michigan Lottery, check out the official Michigan Lottery site, which also offers more information on instant tickets, raffles and other lottery games. The last players from Michigan to win a Mega Millions or Powerball jackpot is the Wolverine FLL lottery club which claimed a $1.05 billion jackpot in March 2021.mlive.com
Kalamazoo babysitter sentenced to prison in 2017 death of infant
KALAMAZOO, MI – A man accused of killing an 11-month-old baby was sentenced to prison Tuesday morning. Bryant Rolland Jr., 37, was sentenced Jan. 3, to 12 1/2 to 40 years in prison by Kalamazoo County Circuit Judge Paul Bridenstine. He was released from prison in December 2020, but has been in the Kalamazoo County Jail since April 2021. He filed lawsuit November 2021 against Turpel, Kalamazoo Defender and Kalamazoo County, alleging he had ineffective counsel. Rolland will be in the Kalamazoo County Jail until he is transferred back to the Michigan Department of Corrections.mlive.com
Former Western Michigan, MSU football player pleads not guilty to assault
KALAMAZOO, MI – Former Western Michigan University running back La’Darius Jefferson, who also previously played for Michigan State, was arraigned on two misdemeanor counts of assault and battery Thursday morning. Jefferson, a Muskegon High School graduate, had played in the Western game against Ohio at home that day. As the man tried to run away, Jefferson allegedly chased after him and tackled him to the ground before kicking and stomping on him, the affidavit said. Western Michigan senior running back La'Darius Jefferson prepares to put on his helmet for the first day of practice at Waldo Stadium on the campus of Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo, Michigan on Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022. Jefferson spent two seasons at Michigan State University after graduating from Muskegon High School in 2018.mlive.com
Kalamazoo man charged with murder at 17 gets life sentence shortened
KALAMAZOO, MI – Three months before turning 18, Odies Murray was sentenced to life in prison without parole. Murray, now 33, was convicted of first-degree murder, assault with intent to commit murder and two counts of felony firearms in 2008 in Kalamazoo County Circuit Court. Kalamazoo County Circuit Chief Judge Gary Giguere Jr. presided over Murray’s original trial and his resentencing. Murray has not done anything in prison to show he has the chance of rehabilitation, Kalamazoo County Assistant Prosecutor Ken Barnard said. Barnard read a letter from Carmelita Revera, the mother of Walter Revera.mlive.com
23-year-old Kalamazoo man injured in Christmas Eve shooting
KALAMAZOO, MI - Police in Kalamazoo are investigating a Christmas Eve shooting. Officers from the Kalamazoo Department of Public Safety located the scene of the shooting near the intersection of Conant and Hawley streets. The victim is a 23-year-old man from Kalamazoo who is currently in stable condition, police said. Anyone with information regarding this incident is asked to contact the Kalamazoo Department of Public Safety at 337-8120 or Silent Observer at 343-2100. Read more from MLiveMan holds 3 juveniles at gunpoint, breaks into woman’s apartment, Kalamazoo police sayNumerous vehicles in ditches off U.S. 131 in southern Kalamazoo County15-year-old shot in Kalamazoo16-year-old charged as adult in murder of Kalamazoo teenager17-year-old shot at Kalamazoo apartment complexHomeless man’s death sparks call to action from Kalamazoo city commissionersmlive.com
Murder charge to be lessened against 16-year-old, prosecutor says
KALAMAZOO, MI – An open murder charge against a 16-year-old will be lessened, at least temporarily. Kahree Louis Compton was originally charged with open murder Wednesday afternoon in Kalamazoo County District Court. Related: 16-year-old charged as adult in murder of Kalamazoo teenagerThe open murder charge will be dismissed and the assault with intent to murder charge will be filed, Getting said. Open murder may be added again in the future if Jones is taken off life support, he said. “As far as I am concerned with regard to a murder charge, there are only two – you’re either dead or not dead,” Getting said.mlive.com
Kalamazoo city offices closing early before expected snowstorm
KALAMAZOO, MI – City offices in Kalamazoo will close early Thursday. City of Kalamazoo offices are closing at 2 p.m., Dec. 22, because of the expected hazardous weather conditions, a news release said. Kalamazoo County is in a blizzard warning from 4 p.m., Thursday, Dec. 22 to 7 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 24. Related: Blizzard Warning officially issued for 13 Michigan counties, more counties to comeCity of Portage plow drivers will be working 12-hour shifts to deal with the snow fall, according to the city. More from MLive:16-year-old charged as adult in murder of Kalamazoo teenagerKalamazoo teenager killed in shooting was funny, adorable, aunt saysKalamazoo man accused of murder heading toward jury trialmlive.com
16-year-old charged as adult in murder of Kalamazoo teenager
KALAMAZOO, MI – A 16-year-old will be charged as an adult in a fatal shooting last week. Compton is being charged as an adult after the Kalamazoo County Prosecutor’s Office reviewed the case, according to a news release from the office. Compton was denied bond by Kalamazoo County District Judge Vincent Westra because of the serious nature of the charge. Related: Kalamazoo teenager killed in shooting was funny, adorable, aunt saysJones was not enrolled at Kalamazoo Public Schools for the 2022-2023 school year, KPS Executive Director of Communications Susan Coney said. More from MLive:Man hit, killed by minivan after exiting vehicle following rear-end crashKalamazoo man accused of murder heading toward jury trialNew Kalamazoo County Board of Commissioners sworn inmlive.com
Kalamazoo man accused of murder heading toward jury trial
KALAMAZOO, MI – A man accused of fatally shooting a woman and injuring two others is heading toward a jury trial. Kalamazoo County District Judge Richard Santoni found Wednesday, Dec. 21, there was probable cause Myquan Deontae Rogers had committed 17 felonies, including murder and assault with intent to murder. Rogers was charged Nov. 18 with open murder and three counts of assault with intent to murder. Related: Kalamazoo man held girlfriend at gunpoint, forced her to drive after car in triple shooting, attorney saysRogers is held without bond in the Kalamazoo County Jail. More from MLive:Driver, child injured in school bus rollover crash in Calhoun CountyNew Kalamazoo County Board of Commissioners sworn inCity of Portage to spend $1.4 million on Bishop’s Bog boardwalk replacementmlive.com
New Kalamazoo County Board of Commissioners sworn in
KALAMAZOO, MI -- Recently elected Kalamazoo County Commissioners were sworn in to serve on the board that runs the county government. Democrats Abigail Wheeler, John Patrick Taylor and Dale Deleeuw were elected in November and sworn in Tuesday, Dec. 20, during a ceremony before the 7 p.m. Kalamazoo County Board of Commissioners meeting, the final meeting of the current commission. The full board of commissioners and the areas they represent are:Tami Rey, Democrat, District OneJen Strebs, Democrat, District TwoMonteze Morales, Democrat, District ThreeAbigail Wheeler, Democrat, District FourJohn Patrick Taylor, Democrat, District FiveJohn Gisler, Republican, District SixJeff Heppler, Republican, District SevenWendy Mazer, Republican, District EightDale Deleeuw, Democrat, District NineThe incoming board will be made up of six Democrats and three Republicans. The board shrank by two members during a recent redistricting process, meaning there are now nine commissioners, instead of the 11 members it had previously. Read more:Newly elected Kalamazoo County Board of Commissioners has 6-3 Democratic majorityOwner of nuclear power plant along Lake Michigan to try again at restartingCity of Kalamazoo upgrading GPS technology to track snowplows and other vehicles livemlive.com
Elected official wants voters to elect Kalamazoo County road commissioners, too
KALAMAZOO, MI -- Citing democracy and giving citizens a voice, a Kalamazoo County commissioner is proposing a plan that would have citizens vote to elect county road commissioners. Kalamazoo County Commissioner Jen Strebs told MLive/Kalamazoo Gazette she plans to start a conversation about the idea at the 4 p.m. Committee of the Whole meeting on Tuesday, Dec. 20.mlive.com
16-year-old arrested in homicide of Kalamazoo teen
KALAMAZOO, MI – A 16-year-old was arrested on Monday, Dec. 19 for the fatal shooting of a 17-year-old. Related: 17-year-old Kalamazoo shooting victim dies in hospitalA 16-year-old was arrested for the homicide of Jones Monday afternoon Dec. 19, KDPS said in a news release. “The Kalamazoo Department of Public Safety extends its sincerest condolences to the family and friends of the deceased,” KDPS said in the release. This is the 10th homicide in the city of Kalamazoo in 2022, and the 17th in Kalamazoo County in 2022. It’s getting dollars from county housing millageMan dies in Kalamazoo County crash after losing control of vehicle while passingmlive.com
What’s that being constructed near Portage? It’s getting dollars from county housing millage
The development currently being constructed is part of the effort to help solve the county’s housing woes, a township official said. Total project cost is estimated at $64.6 million, according to an application for millage funding submitted to the county. Developers requested $1.5 million in county millage funding earlier this year, and received $936,000, according to the county. The project was the most significant that received county funding, in terms of the total number of units. Through the millage funding, the county is working to create thousands of housing units with funding disbursements over the next eight years.mlive.com
Crane removal will cause 4-day road closure in downtown Kalamazoo
KALAMAZOO, MI -- Eleanor Street will be closed between North Park Street and North Church Street for the removal of a crane that has been in use to build the Kalamazoo County justice facility, the city of Kalamazoo reports. The stretch of Elanor Street will be closed from Tuesday, Dec. 27, through Friday, Dec. 30, for the removal of a crane from the site, city of Kalamazoo Public Services Director James Baker said. The closure is needed to safely demobilize the crane, Baker said. Sidewalks will remain open for pedestrians and are permitted for use by bicycles. Read more:Kalamazoo schools superintendent Rita Raichoudhuri resigns, effective immediatelyRam recalls 1.4M trucks because tailgates can open unexpectedlyNew Year’s Fest to offer 60 performances, ball drop, fireworks and more in Kalamazoomlive.com
Accounting firm hired at $150 an hour to promote transparency at Kalamazoo County office
KALAMAZOO, MI -- Kalamazoo County has hired a Certified Public Accounting (CPA) firm to help increase accountability and promote transparency within the treasurer’s office. The CPA firm is working directly with staff in the county treasurer’s office to add extra capacity. Whitener told MLive/Kalamazoo Gazette the bond payment was made on time, though it was paid later than usual. It was simply not as early as we normally make them, due to some medical absences,” Whitener told MLive/Kalamazoo Gazette. Kevin Catlin told MLive/Kalamazoo Gazette that the Board of Commissioners is making “every effort” to uphold accountability and promote transparency within the treasurer’s office.mlive.com
Kalamazoo County hires new deputy administrator for internal services
KALAMAZOO, MI -- Kalamazoo County has hired a new deputy county administrator. Kalamazoo County Administrator/Controller Kevin A. Catlin appointed Terrell Cole as the new deputy county administrator for internal services, the county said on Dec. 12 in a news release. Cole will take over the role that is currently held by interim Deputy County Administrator Patsy Moore effective Jan. 17, 2023, the county said. The position is also tasked with assisting the county administrator/controller in executing priorities of the Kalamazoo County Board of Commissioners. The position specifically oversees the departments of Finance, Information Technology, Buildings and Grounds, Human Resources, and Equalization, she said.mlive.com
Restaurant plans to open at former Arcadia Ales site along Kalamazoo River
The former Arcadia Ales restaurant and beer production facility is located east of the Kalamazoo River and, when it was open, offered outdoor seating with firepits and a stage for music and performances. Arcadia Ales founder and former CEO Tim Suprise opened the Kalamazoo location of Arcadia Ales in 2014. In 2016, Arcadia Ales partnered with the Lansing-area restaurant group Urban Feast, founded by developer Kris Elliott, to open Arcadia Smokehouse in Lansing’s East Side neighborhood. The site at 701 E. Michigan Ave. now has two active license through the Michigan Liquor Control Commission under the name Kalamazoo Ales LLC. Both names, Kalamazoo Ales LLC and ThunderBird, appear on the documents.mlive.com
Kalamazoo babysitter pleads guilty to killing infant in 2017
The defendant changed his story during interviews to cover for himself, Kalamazoo County assistant prosecutor Kenneth Barnard said during the trial. In one account of the events, Rolland told policeHe was in the Kalamazoo County Jail in 2017 after he was first charged. He was released from prison in December 2020 and has been in the Kalamazoo County Jail since April 2021. Kalamazoo County Prosecutor Jeff Getting previously said it was his first time signing an order to vacate a conviction in a first-degree murder case. Rolland filed lawsuit November 2021 against Turpel, Kalamazoo Defender and Kalamazoo County, alleging he had ineffective counsel.mlive.com
$300K of stolen vehicles found in alleged chop shop in Southwest Michigan
ST. JOSEPH COUNTY, MI – About $300,000 in stolen vehicles have been found in an alleged chop shop. Three properties were searched by Michigan State Police on Tuesday, Dec. 6. Police found five stolen trucks, three stolen ATVs and several altered trails, police said in a news release. Michigan State Police called it a “stolen vehicle theft ring,” according to the news release. Police searched a property in the 10000 block of Welburn Road, in Cass County and two properties in the 51000 block of Lang Road in St. Joseph County, police said.mlive.com
Now-former township supervisor accused of sexual assault heading to jury trial
KALAMAZOO, MI – A now-former township supervisor accused of sexual assault is heading toward a jury trial. His case was bound over from Kalamazoo County District Court to Circuit Court after a preliminary examination Tuesday, Nov. 29. Related: Township supervisor charged with sexual assault of woman after 2010 golf outingLinn is accused of sexually assaulting a woman in August 2010 after a golf outing at Sauganas Golf Course in Kalamazoo County, Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel said previously. He was charged through the Kalamazoo Sexual Assault Kit Initiative. Linn was elected as the Fabius Township supervisor in November 2020.mlive.com
Suspect charged with open murder in killing of Kalamazoo man near WMU
KALAMAZOO, MI — A Lansing man accused of killing a 21-year-old Kalamazoo man following an altercation outside of a nightclub near Western Michigan University was charged with open murder Monday morning. Related: ‘He took me for a beautiful ride,’ father says of son slain near Western’s campusBryce Salter was shot and killed Friday, Nov. 11, 2022 near Western Michigan University's campus. Lang told police he saw Salter standing next to his Dodge Durango, which was parked near the Y-Bar, at around 3:10 a.m. Friday, Nov. 11. “When they slam the door and lock it behind him, then he’ll care.”Bond was denied Monday morning by Kalamazoo County District Judge Kathleen Hemingway. Lang is currently on parole for a previous conviction of armed robbery, according to Michigan Department of Corrections records.mlive.com
Kalamazoo man will stand trial for murder at LakeView Apartments
KALAMAZOO, MI — A Kalamazoo man accused of killing a 23-year-old man, possibly over a stolen dog, is headed to trial. Collin Mitchell, 23, was fatally shot around 12:20 a.m. Sept. 21, 2021, at LakeView Apartments in the 1900 block of Elkerton Avenue in Kalamazoo Township. He was denied bond at the time by Kalamazoo County District Judge Vincent Westra. Related: Kalamazoo man accused of murder granted bond, a career first, judge saysA rescheduled preliminary hearing scheduled for Friday, Nov. 18, in Kalamazoo County District Court, was waived in agreement by both sides. Bishop has now been bound over to Kalamazoo County Circuit Court, where he is expected to stand trial.mlive.com
Southbound U.S. 131 closed for 20-vehicle pileup
KALAMAZOO COUNTY, MI - Southbound U.S. 131 is closed Friday, Nov 18, after a pileup of at least 20 vehicles near the D Avenue exit, Kalamazoo County sheriff’s deputies said. The southbound lanes are closed from D Avenue to the Ravine Road overpass, sheriff’s deputies said. The southbound lanes of U.S. 131 in Kalamazoo County are closed for a multi-vehicle pileup. Conditions are shown in this Michigan Department of Transportation photo taken of northbound lanes near E Avenue. Related: Police close U.S. 131 for multiple crashes with heaviest snow on the wayTo the north, the northbound lanes of U.S. 131 are closed at 20 Mile Road in Osceola Township.mlive.com
Arts Council of Greater Kalamazoo announces recipients of $40,000 in grant awards
KALAMAZOO, MI -- The Arts Council of Greater Kalamazoo (ACGK) Tuesday announced nine Arts Fund of Kalamazoo County Round 1 grant recipients. This year the ACGK received $75,215 in 16 separate requests, according to the release. Individual artists and art organizations can apply for up to $5,500 in grant funding, according to the ACGK website. The grant was established in 1986 with funds from a Kalamazoo Community Foundation Initiative Grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. The Arts Council of Greater Kalamazoo will begin accepting applications for Round 2 of the grant on Dec. 15 with a deadline on Feb. 17.mlive.com
Kalamazoo County’s veteran of the year proud of his time as Marine, supporting veterans
The Kalamazoo County Board of Commissioners recognized the veteran of the year Tuesday at a meeting. 20 Kalamazoo County Veterans Day ceremony honors VeteransBeing a Marine is one of the things in his life he is very proud of, Jarzambek said. He is also proud of his time as director of the Kalamazoo County Veterans Service Office, and running the reserve division of the Kalamazoo County Sheriff’s Office. Lauren King, Veterans Service Office supervisor, said the office was “beyond thrilled” for Jarzambek to be recognized for all his contributions to the veterans and community of Kalamazoo. He thanked the staff of Kalamazoo County Veterans Service Office for the important work they do.mlive.com
Kalamazoo County’s 10 most dangerous intersections of 2021 revealed
KALAMAZOO, MI — Just as the snow begins to fly, Michigan Auto Law has revealed its annual list of the most dangerous intersections in Kalamazoo County, based on police car accident report data for 2021. Nine of the intersections in the top 10 are located, at least partly, in city limits. The intersection at Drake Road and West Main Street in Kalamazoo remained as the county’s most dangerous, in terms of total crashes, with 69 in 2021, up from 42 in 2020. The second most dangerous intersection in 2021 was the downtown intersection of Park Street and Kalamazoo Avenue, which climbed from the No. The total number of crashes increased from from 33 in 2020, to 56 in 2021, while the number of injuries increased from eight to 18.mlive.com
Kalamazoo County voter turnout beats 2018 tally, hits record high for midterms
KALAMAZOO, MI -- Midterm election voters came out in record numbers in Kalamazoo County. Out of the more than 200,000 registered voters in Kalamazoo County, 56.2% cast ballots in the 2022 midterms. In the gubernatorial race, 72,516 Kalamazoo County voters chose Democrat Gretchen Whitmer (61.67%), and 42,436 voted for Tudor Dixon (36.09%), helping Whitmer secure the seat for another four years. Kalamazoo County voters helped propel Democrats in statewide offices, with 61% of voters choosing Democrat Jocelyn Benson and 59% choosing Attorney General Dana Nessel. Alfonso received 58,903 votes in Kalamazoo County, compared to 42,693 votes for Huizenga.mlive.com
Man dies after vehicle crashes into tree in Kalamazoo County
BRADY TWP, MI -- A collision with a tree alongside a Kalamazoo County roadway left a 61-year-old man dead Friday night, police said. At about 8:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 11, troopers from the Michigan State Police Paw Paw Post responded to a vehicle crash with a tree on Sprinkle Road in Brady Township near Kalamazoo. A preliminary investigation by police revealed the driver of a 2002 red Subaru lost control while driving along Sprinkle Road, running off the roadway and into a tree. The driver, a 61-year-old Vicksburg man, suffered severe injuries, and was later pronounced deceased at the scene, police said. Troopers were assisted at the scene by the Vicksburg and Schoolcraft police departments, Kalamazoo County Sheriff’s Office and South Kalamazoo Fire Department.mlive.com
Kalamazoo honors those who have served at Veterans Day ceremony
KALAMAZOO, MI – Veterans Day is a time where everyone in Kalamazoo can honor the people who have servedThe Kalamazoo County Veterans Day ceremony was held Friday, Nov. 11, at the Robert L. Cook Veterans Memorial Plaza in Rose Park. The ceremony was sponsored by the Kalamazoo County Veterans Service Office and the Rotary Club of Kalamazoo Sunrise. The Kalamazoo Veterans Events Committee also helped to put on the ceremony. Charles Parker spoke on behalf of the Sunrise Rotary Club, discussing the importance of Veterans Day and teaching the younger generations about it. “We need to remember.”Don Jarzambek was announced as the 2022 Kalamazoo County Veteran of the Year.mlive.com
Juvenile lifer’s sentence reduced for homicide of Kalamazoo 13-year-old
KALAMAZOO, MI – The prison sentence was reduced for a man who was 15 when he shot and killed a 13-year-old. Garay was sentenced to life in prison without parole in July 2015 by Kalamazoo County Circuit Judge Alexander Lipsey. Related: Court will review life sentence for man, then 16, convicted of killing Kalamazoo boy, 13“Where is consideration for the victims?” Heather Bergmann said. “Entering prison at a young age with a life without parole sentence is a difficult task,” Taylor said. “The issue is not if defendant should be warehoused away for the rest of his life,” Lipsey said.mlive.com
Kalamazoo supports healthy bird habitat with city commission action
KALAMAZOO, MI -- The Kalamazoo City Commission showed its support for birds, joining a countywide effort to conserve bird habitat that supporters say will also be healthier for humans. The Kalamazoo City Commission approved a resolution to join the effort at its Monday, Nov. 7, business meeting. Fish and Wildlife Service for an Urban Bird Treaty designation for Kalamazoo County. The city plans to reevaluate whether it could serve in a core partner role in future years, the agenda packet states. Related: Fledging falcons named after Black Kalamazoo pioneersThe city will document outcomes of existing projects, approved and funded as part of different city initiatives, and report those to the Urban Bird Treaty partners on a bi-annual basis.mlive.com
Kalamazoo County’s blue wave, and 5 other takeaways from 2022 election results
At least in Kalamazoo County, Tuesday’s election resulted in a big blue wave. Democrats will have a majority on the nine-member Kalamazoo County Board of Commissioners, holding six of those seats. In this election, 81% of Kalamazoo city voters and 71% in Kalamazoo Township backed Whitmer. Rick Snyder was running for re-election -- and took 54% of the Kalamazoo County vote. This election, 44% of the Kalamazoo County voters used an absentee ballot.mlive.com
Voters reject proposed increase to Kalamazoo County operating millage
KALAMAZOO, MI -- Voters in Kalamazoo County opted against increasing the tax rate levied to fund the county’s general operating expenses, according to unofficial results of the Tuesday, Nov. 8, election. The proposed 4.85-mill tax would have been levied for a period of 20 years beginning in 2023, if approved by the voters, Kalamazoo County Administrator Kevin Catlin told MLive/Kalamazoo Gazette previously. The proposal was intended to “offset” a required rollback of the tax rate to 4.6318 mills, previously approved by county voters. The proposal was a request to increase the millage rate related to the Headlee tax limitation. Read more:Newly elected Kalamazoo County Board of Commissioners has 6-3 Democratic majorityKalamazoo-area election results for Nov. 8, 2022Matt DePerno concedes attorney general race to Dana Nesselmlive.com
Former Michigan House Speaker Lee Chatfield resigns as CEO of Southwest Michigan First
KALAMAZOO, Mich. – Former Michigan House Speaker Lee Chatfield has resigned as CEO of Southwest Michigan First amid community pushback. pic.twitter.com/loS4v0kH3t — Lee Chatfield (@LeeChatfield) February 22, 2021Southwest Michigan First, an economic development agency in Kalamazoo, announced Chatfield as the new CEO on Feb. 11. According to WOODTV, the city of Kalamazoo and the Kalamazoo Promise both pulled support from Southwest Michigan First after the announcement that Chatfield had been hired. As the community started voicing concerns about Chatfield, Southwest Michigan First said it updated its handbook to make it clear it did not discriminate based on gender identity or sexual orientation. pic.twitter.com/iyTKdviZMh — Lee Chatfield (@LeeChatfield) February 16, 2021READ: More political coverage
Fact checking Biden’s virus claims made during Michigan visit to Pfizer plant
Ramping up vaccine productionFirst, we’ll start with a claim Biden made about the administration’s effort to ramp up vaccine production in the U.S. Biden was referring to his commitment to have 100 million shots administered in American arms during his first 100 days in office. Biden statement: “24 million adults, 11 million children don’t have enough food to eat. It looks like President Biden is using USDA numbers taken during the pandemic, but before the full extent of the pandemic hit. Critics have previously argued that 100 million doses was an inadequate goal to begin with, and hoped that distribution pace would be increased when possible.
Biden outlines plan to ramp up US vaccine rollout while at Michigan Pfizer facility
AdPfizer is also reportedly on track to ship out 200 million vaccine doses by the end of May this year, two months ahead of their original schedule, Bourla said. To help offer more flexibility to vaccination centers across the country, Bourla says Pfizer is also improving the longevity of stored vaccine doses with a new storage option. Following his tour of Pfizer’s largest manufacturing site, addressing the nation, President Biden thanked the Pfizer employees for their role in producing hundreds of millions of doses of the much-needed coronavirus vaccine. That’s how to beat this pandemic.”Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer joined President Biden on a tour of the Pfizer facility Friday, her team announced hours after the event. Several shipments of coronavirus vaccines produced by Pfizer and Moderna have also been delayed to Michigan and other states this week due to severe weather conditions.
President Biden speaks from Portage Pfizer facility
(AP Photo/Evan Vucci)PORTAGE, Mich. – During his first visit to Michigan since elected president, Joe Biden delivered remarks from the Pfizer manufacturing site in Kalamazoo County on Friday, Feb. 19. Recap: Biden outlines plan to ramp up US vaccine rollout while at Michigan Pfizer facilityPresident Biden was originally scheduled to visit Pfizer’s largest manufacturing site in Portage on Thursday this week. AdPfizer is one of two companies manufacturing coronavirus vaccines that have been authorized for widespread use in the United States. Tens of millions of vaccine doses have been produced and shipped out of the Portage facility. Pfizer expects to make a batch of the vaccine in about 60 days, meaning more doses are on the way.
Michigan man to be arraigned on murder charges in slaying of his parents
A booking photo of Nicholas Johnson from the Kalamazoo County Jail. (Feb. 9, 2021)PORTAGE, Mich. – A 27-year-old man has been charged with murder in the slayings of his parents whose bodies were found in a wooded area in western Michigan. Nicholas Johnson was expected to be arraigned Thursday in Kalamazoo County District Court. Their bodies were unearthed Friday at Gourdneck State Game Area in Portage, about three miles from their home. Police said their son was found in a storage unit at an apartment building and had his parents’ car.
Metro Detroit essential workers push for vaccinations
PORTAGE, Mich. – With the shipments of the Pfizer vaccine out of Portage on the way, Michigan’s essential workers -- especially those in the food industry -- are hoping they will be next in line after medical workers to be vaccinated. For months, workers in grocery stores and the food industry have been subjected to some of the worst outbreaks during the pandemic. essential workers are urging they should be next -- as stores continue to fill with holiday shoppers. Michigan’s covid outbreak tracker shows the food industry and retail shops account for nearly 40 current outbreaks statewide. They are still part of the first wave with hundreds of thousands of other workers in essential industries all looking to get vaccinated.
How Macomb County prepared for its first vaccine shipment
Wayne County is holding a meeting Monday morning to discuss what’s next and Macomb County is expected to receive about 2,000 doses. In November, Macomb County received its first freezer capable of keeping the vaccine stable until ready to thaw. Macomb County will also be storing and distributing for counties north of it -- Lapeer, St. Clair and Sanilac counties. Despite having some of the highest total confirmed cases of coronavirus in Michigan, Macomb County has one of the lowest growth rates in the state. Macomb County officials are expecting its delivery of the vaccine midweek.
Beaumont, Henry Ford, Ascension hospitals prepare to administer vaccines to staff
Michigan healthcare officials will start distributing the vaccine to frontline workers. Ascension Hospital in Warren and five hospitals in the Henry Ford Health System will be able to store the vaccines in super cold freezers once they arrive. Henry Ford Health System CCO Dr. Adnan Munkarah said the they will be storing the vaccines at its hospitals in Detroit, Wyandotte, Macomb, West Bloomfield and Jackson. They have about 11,000 frontline workers who need vaccines, so a lottery system was set up and the first 1,000 workers know who they are. Frontline workers are asking for all the help they can get to keep that number down.
Nightside Report Dec. 13, 2020: Michigan Legislature to close offices amid Electoral College vote Monday, fighter pilot who died in Upper Peninsula plane crash identified
All rights reserved)DETROIT – The eyes of the nation are on Portage, a city on Michigan’s west side in Kalamazoo County, just west of Battle Creek. The monumental effort to create a COVID-19 vaccine came together Sunday as the first batches were shipped nationwide. It is the biggest vaccination effort in American history. WATCH Local 4 News at 11Metro Detroit weather: Getting colder under cloudy skies, Sunday eveningWe keep a fair amount of clouds around Sunday evening as it gets colder. Overnight lows will be in the low 20s and wind chills in the teens anytime wind speed reaches 5 mph or greater.
Metro Detroit hospitals prepare timeline for vaccine distribution
PORTAGE, Mich. – The shipments of the Pfizer vaccine out of Portage set in motion the largest vaccination effort in American history. Nearly 3 million doses of the vaccine will be delivered to all 50 states. In Metro Detroit, that includes Ascension Hospital in Warren and Henry Ford Health System in Detroit, which is expecting just under 1,000 initial doses. Beaumont Health is estimating they’ll get about 1,000 doses in the first batch before moving up to about 14,000 Pfizer vaccines as production kicks into high-gear. They have about 11,000 frontline workers who need vaccines, so a lottery system was set up and the first 1,000 workers know who they are.
Residents cheer on historic shipment of COVID vaccine from outside Michigan Pfizer plant
PORTAGE, Mich. – The eyes of the nation are on Portage, a city on Michigan’s west side in Kalamazoo County, just west of Battle Creek. The monumental effort to create a COVID-19 vaccine came together Sunday as the first batches were shipped nationwide. It is the biggest vaccination effort in American history. From Portage, the doses of the vaccine will be kept in temperature safe packages and transported with GPS trackers and U.S. RELATED: What it takes to safely transport Pfizer’s COVID vaccine to hospitalsThe vaccine will be shipped to those on the front lines of the health care industry and nursing home patients.
What it takes to safely transport Pfizer’s COVID vaccine to hospitals
RELATED: FDA authorizes Pfizer’s COVID vaccine; Michigan will distribute in 4 phasesOnce those shipments are packed and ready to leave Pfizer, it’s a painstaking process to make sure they arrive safely to hospitals. Boxes are loaded with the vaccine, dry ice and GPS trackers because time and temperature are critical. The Pfizer vaccine needs to be stored at 100 degrees below zero Fahrenheit. To maintain a sustainable temperature during transport, crews are using tons of dry ice -- carbon dioxide that has been cooled to at least 110 degrees below zero Fahrenheit, becoming solid. When dry ice melts, it emits carbon dioxide, so the FAA is requiring crews to wear carbon dioxide detectors inside the pressurized and sealed airplanes transporting the virus.
Pfizer’s Michigan facility to begin COVID vaccine shipments Sunday morning
PORTAGE, Mich. – It’s a huge logistics operation to ship millions of vaccines to hospitals across the country -- and it’s all centered here in Michigan. The eyes of the nation are on Portage, a city on Michigan’s west side in Kalamazoo County, just west of Battle Creek. Workers at the Pfizer plant in Portage worked hard to prepare to ship the vaccines Sunday morning. RELATED: FDA authorizes Pfizer’s COVID vaccine; Michigan will distribute in 4 phases“I have 100% confidence that we will get the vaccine to the American people,” said Gen. Gustave Perna. Read: Michigan officials: COVID vaccine to be distributed in 4 phases, prioritize frontline workers“We want to make sure the vaccine arrives safely and that it can be safely administered when arrival occurs.
MLive reporter arrested at ‘Proud Boys’ rally in Kalamazoo, posts show
KALAMAZOO, Mich. – An MLive reporter was arrested while covering a rally that turned violent in Kalamazoo on Saturday afternoon, according to reports online. Members of the far-right group “Proud Boys” reportedly clashed with counter-protesters during a scheduled demonstration in the area of E. Water and N. Edward streets, WOOD-TV reports. (Language warning) Far-right group Proud Boys and counter-protesters meet in downtown Kalamazoo. Proud Boys are attacking counter protesters, spraying pepper spray. The Proud Boys have largely cleared out, overwhelmed by counter-protesters.
Michigan bans face-down restraints at youth centers after 16-year-old dies
Videos show staff members piling on the 16-year-old, trying to restrain him after they said he threw a sandwich to the ground. READ: ‘Outrageous and heartbreaking’: Michigan officials release videos leading up to Kalamazoo youth center deathState officials have announced new emergency rules aimed at preventing anything like that from happening again. The rules are an overhaul of how staff at homes are supposed to care for the children. The state is now changing the rules for facilities like that one, which are paid by the state to care for children. READ: Lawsuit filed in death of Michigan teen restrained by youth home staff for throwing sandwich
Michigan bans face-down restraints at youth centers after 16-year-old dies
Michigan bans face-down restraints at youth centers after 16-year-old diesPublished: July 16, 2020, 11:28 pmCornelius Frederick died last month after being restrained at the Lakeside For Children facility. Videos show staff members piling on the 16-year-old, trying to restrain him after they said he threw a sandwich to the ground.
‘Outrageous and heartbreaking’: Michigan officials release videos leading up to Kalamazoo youth center death
KALAMAZOO, Mich. – The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) released security footage that shows the moments leading up to the death of a teenager at a youth center in Kalamazoo. “MDHHS decided to release two videos in the interest of transparency,” officials said. A staff nurse was near the incident, and video shows she did not come to Cornelius’ aid. READ: Partial video released in teenager’s Kalamazoo youth center deathFrederick went into cardiac arrest and died the next day at the hospital, according to officials. After Cornelius’ death, officials said all 125 youth at the center were removed and placed in other settings based on their needs.
Medical examiner rules Michigan teen’s death homicide, 3 charged
Cornelius Fredericks, 16, died May 1, two days after he lost consciousness while being restrained by staff at Lakeside Academy. The Kalamazoo County Medical Examiner’s office confirmed Fredericks’ manner and cause of death was a homicide. Getting, who called Fredericks’ death a “tragedy beyond description,” said the accused employees are expected to turn themselves in for arraignment but didn’t say when that would happen. Sequel said it fired the three workers involved in Fredericks' death and relieved the executive director of Lakeside Academy of his duties. Earlier Wednesday, attorney Geoffrey Fieger, who represents Fredericks’ family, called for charges to be filed in the teen’s death.
Michigan ends ties with company after teen’s restraint, death in Kalamazoo facility
Whitmer said in a statement late Saturday that Sequel Youth and Family Services cannot provide services for facilities licensed by the state agency. “Protecting our most vulnerable is a top priority of my administration, and the senseless death of a youth at Lakeside for Children in Kalamazoo is intolerable and heartbreaking. Cornelius Frederick, 16, pictured at the hospital after being restrained by staff at Lakeside Academy in Kalamazoo on April 29, 2020. In a special report from MDHHS one staff member allegedly slapped, choked and scratched a student in January. The Associated Press left an email Sunday morning seeking comment from Sequel Family and Youth Services.
Michigan officials issue warning on scammers posing as health officials
LANSING, Mich. – Telephone scammers are posing as human services officials and attempting to steal personal information from unsuspecting Michigan residents, warns Attorney General Dana Nessel, Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Director Robert Gordon and the Michigan State Police. No one should give out personal information to an unsolicited caller. “If you are ever asked by an unsolicited caller to give out personal information, don’t do it,” Nessel said. “MDHHS does not call clients and ask for detailed personal information over the phone,” said MDHHS Director RobertGordon. Those who wish to make a report about scam calls can do so by contacting the Attorney General’s Consumer ProtectionDivision.
One of two people with EEE virus in Kalamazoo County dies
The Kalamazoo County Health and Community Services said in a statement on Friday that the person was one of two in the county to contract the virus. (WDIV)KALAMAZOO, Mich. - Officials in Kalamazoo County say a person who contracted a mosquito-borne virus called eastern equine encephalitis has died. Mlive reports that the Kalamazoo County Health and Community Services said in a statement Friday that the person was one of two in the county to contract the virus. Read more on the deadly virus here:Copyright 2019 by WDIV ClickOnDetroit - All rights reserved.