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Published July 12, 2017

SOUTHFIELD — Well-known Southfield attorney Michael Morse is embroiled in a lawsuit that claims he sexually assaulted five women.

According to documents from Oakland County Circuit Court, the women who have filed lawsuits against Morse are being represented by attorney Geoffrey Fieger.

Morse and Fieger are both high-profile lawyers with firms based in Southfield.

According to court documents, Morse allegedly verbally and physically assaulted the women on four different occasions.

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Published July 12, 2017

SOUTHFIELD — A local convicted sex offender was recently sentenced to 35 years in prison in the second case against him.

According to documents from U.S. District Court, Mitchell Stankiewicz, 22, of Lathrup Village, pleaded guilty March 1 to producing and receiving child pornography, sending obscene material to a minor, and online coercion and enticement of a minor.

Stankiewicz was sentenced June 28 at the U.S. District Court in Detroit in front of Judge George Caram Steeh.

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Published July 12, 2017

METRO DETROIT — Fairy gardens combine fantasy, imagination and gardening to create a summertime craft that can be enjoyed by all ages. 

Rayna Burkhart, of Romulus, said via Facebook message that she had been collecting fairy sculptures for years before fairy gardening gained popularity a few years ago. 

“It opened my eyes to a thousand possibilities. Gardening is the love of my life, and mixing the two together is beautiful and fulfilling,” she said. 

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Published July 7, 2017

MACOMB COUNTY/DETROIT — A group of Macomb Community College students who feel their freedom of speech was violated earlier this year are seeking justice through the legal system.

On July 5, attorneys from the nonprofit legal organization Alliance Defending Freedom filed a federal lawsuit on behalf of the students to challenge a college policy that they say bans all public expression from anyone, minus labor unions, without a permit from administrators.

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Published July 5, 2017

SOUTHFIELD — A local organization is crossing religious barriers in the name of saving the planet.

Michigan Interfaith Power and Light is a nonprofit organization founded in 2002 to inspire and equip people of faith to take care of the planet, according to its website.

MIIPL is part of a nationwide organization comprising 40 state affiliates and 18,000 faith communities across the country. The organization helps places of worship implement green practices and connects them with resources on how to make their buildings more eco-friendly.

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Published July 5, 2017

How can you wish upon a star if the stars are hard to see?

Light pollution in large metropolitan areas such as Detroit can limit what’s visible in the night sky, but luckily for stargazers, better viewing options aren’t far away.

Several Michigan parks now have state-designated dark sky preserves that aim to restrict artificial light, preserve natural darkness and provide spectacular views for visitors.

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Published June 30, 2017

OAKLAND COUNTY — Just as the grills and sparklers fizzle out at the end of Independence Day, the fun will just be getting started at Springfield Oaks County Park as the annual Oakland County Fair opens up July 7-16.

Grandstand entertainment, games, carnival rides, fair food, fireworks and so much more will bring Davisburg to life once again for the decades-old family event. But tradition is only half of the fun, according to Fair Manager L.C. Scramlin.

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Published June 27, 2017

SOUTHFIELD — At a special meeting June 19, the Southfield City Council approved the adoption of the city’s budget for 2017-18.

The budget, which is effective July 1 and runs through June 30, 2018, was approved 6-0. Councilwoman Joan Seymour was not at the meeting.

Austen Michaels, deputy director of fiscal services, presented an overview of the budget to council during the meeting.

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Published June 27, 2017

SOUTHFIELD — A handful of German shepherds let out an honorary howl June 17 in remembrance of Southfield Police Department K-9 Axe.
Axe, who died June 1, was honored in a full police burial at the Michigan War Dog Memorial in South Lyon.

Officer Michael Raby, of the Southfield Police Department, was Axe’s partner. The two were paired up in 2007, and they worked together until Axe’s retirement in 2013.

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Published June 27, 2017

SOUTHFIELD — There’s a thin line between “oohs” and “aahs,” and “ughs” and eye rolls when it comes to celebrating the Fourth of July with fireworks.

The Michigan Fireworks Safety Act in 2012 legalized a wider range of commercial fireworks use in the state, and law enforcement officials have been scrambling to keep up with the complaints that come in from neighbors when fireworks are ignited outside of the allotted time periods.

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Published June 22, 2017

METRO DETROIT — The Huron-Clinton Metroparks are 75 years and growing.

From giant inflatable slides and treetop fun to state-of-the-art playground improvements and wildlife and nature conservation efforts, the parks system is continually growing and evolving.

Huron-Clinton Metropolitan Authority Director George Phifer said that ever since the park system opened to the public in 1942, visiting is like taking a mini vacation right at home.

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Published June 21, 2017

METRO DETROIT — Vacation season has arrived, and the suitcases have finally been packed after a long winter. 

But before you walk out that door, is your largest investment as secure as your travel schedule? 

Lt. Eric Reincke, of the Clinton Township Police Department, said that one of law enforcement’s biggest concerns during the vacation season is breaking and entering. 

“There’s a pattern, and people take advantage of that,” he said.  

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Published June 21, 2017

METRO DETROIT — Each winter, as municipal workers make our icy roads safer, they could also be turning our famous freshwater lakes saltier.

Much saltier.

An intensive study published by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences in April observed long-term chloride trends in 371 freshwater lakes across the continent. It was determined that there were increasing chloride trends in most of the urban and rural lakes in the Midwest and Northeast surrounded by greater than 1 percent of impervious land.

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Published June 20, 2017

SOUTHFIELD — A judge has decided to reduce and drop charges in the case against two brothers accused of shooting multiple people inside a local bar late last year.

The brothers, Alonzo Beckom and Carlos Beckum, appeared before Judge Shelia Johnson June 19 in 46th District Court for the conclusion of their probable cause hearing.

Beckom, 21, and Beckum, 24, both of Detroit, were arrested Dec. 1 in connection with a Nov. 19 shooting at Bar 7, 24528 W. 12 Mile Road.

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Published June 20, 2017

SOUTHFIELD — Members of the Southfield Police Department are hoping their recent efforts will convert more kids into bibliophiles this summer.

The Police Department recently launched the Badges and Books program, which provides free books to local children this summer.

In partnership with the Friends of the Southfield Public Library and Kroger, the program began May 18 and will be available once a month throughout the summer.

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Published June 20, 2017

SOUTHFIELD — Southfield city officials have announced that the city will uphold the regulations laid out by the Paris climate agreement.

At the June 12 City Council meeting, Mayor Ken Siver and Councilman Lloyd Crews presented a joint resolution to support the principles of the accord.

“I wanted to acknowledge that we had a number of people contact the city urging us to stay on the course of green infrastructure, green technologies, conservation, and so I’m certainly supportive of that,” Siver said.

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Published June 20, 2017

SOUTHFIELD — The roads are bumpy, cracked and full of holes, but Southfield officials say they have a plan in place to improve the condition of the city’s roads.

City Councilwoman Tawnya Morris invited residents to a town hall on Southfield’s roads at 6 p.m. June 15 at the Southfield Public Library.
Residents listened to a handful of presentations from city officials before the floor was opened for questions.

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Published June 20, 2017

HAZEL PARK/MADISON HEIGHTS — Nursing assistance is available to low-income women who are pregnant with their first child and who enroll in Oakland County’s Nurse-Family Partnership, or NFP, program. The program recently expanded to include residents of Hazel Park, Madison Heights, Oak Park and Southfield.

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Published June 15, 2017

The Southfield Fire Department is investigating a recent early morning house fire.

According to Fire Chief Johnny Menifee, dispatchers received a call regarding a fire around 12:48 a.m. June 15 at a home in the 28000 block of Aberdeen Street, near Greenfield and Catalpa.

Units from four of the city’s five fire stations arrived at the scene at 12:52 a.m., Menifee said.

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Published June 15, 2017

Leaders of metro Detroit’s Chaldean and Arab communities are among those speaking out against the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency’s apprehension of dozens of people around June 11 for possible deportation.

According to local Chaldean and Arab-American advocates, the ICE raids took place in Dearborn, Sterling Heights and Warren. Sterling Heights Police Lt. David Sarvello confirmed the recent presence of ICE agents in Sterling Heights.

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