State Roundup

Grand Rapids
Man sentenced to life for home invasion, slaying

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) - A man convicted of murder for his role in the slaying of a 34-year-old western Michigan man found dumped along a road has been sentenced to life in prison without parole.

The Grand Rapids Press reports Kent County Circuit Court Judge Donald Johnston took note of 22-year-old Isaac Fezzey's previously clean criminal record, saying Tuesday: "Typically, people start with something like stealing hubcaps, not felony murder."

Fezzey told the court: "Anything I have to say wouldn't be adequate."

A group of armed and masked men forced their way last September into a Spencer Township home, about 25 miles northeast of Grand Rapids. Authorities say they were after drug money believed to be hidden inside.

Brent Luttrell was forced into a vehicle, shot and stabbed. Several others have faced charges.

Howell
Jail can't reject inmate mail from ACLU, court says

HOWELL, Mich. (AP) - The Livingston County jail in southeastern Michigan must continue to allow inmates to get mail from the American Civil Liberties Union.

A federal appeals court refused to overturn an injunction ordered by a judge last year.

The ACLU's Michigan branch filed a lawsuit after it got no response to two dozen letters sent to inmates. At the time, jail administrator Tom Cremonte said staff doesn't deliver legal mail to inmates unless it's from a lawyer who is representing an inmate.

Cremonte says the jail gets suspicious about mass mailings.

But the appeals court, in a 3-0 decision Tuesday, says the "sweeping scope" of the jail's "arbitrary policies" violates the First Amendment.

Flint
Man, 71, gets jail for shooting cop after dispute

FLINT, Mich. (AP) - An eastern Michigan man has been sentenced to prison after authorities say he shot a police officer following an argument with his wife over an unpaid cable bill.

The Flint Journal reports 71-year-old Marvin Ware was sentenced Tuesday to nine years and 10 months to 20 years in prison. He pleaded no contest to assault with attempt to murder for shooting Officer Andrea Carlson at his Grand Blanc Township home.

A no contest plea is not a guilty plea, but is treated as such for sentencing purposes.

Ware's wife told authorities that he choked her on June 17, 2013, and stopped when police arrived. Prosecutors say two officers arrived, and Ware's wife ran out the open garage door. According to prosecutors, Ware shot Carlson in the shoulder before he was hit by return fire.

Flint
City wants more cops on stre­ets amid violence

FLINT, Mich. (AP) - The Flint City Council is making changes in the city's budget under a proposal by the mayor that would put more police officers on the streets amid a rash of violence.

The Flint Journal reports the council voted to move roughly $323,000 from the fire department to the police department for the current fiscal year. Walling said the funds were budgeted for unfilled firefighting positions.

Since July 31, 11 people have died in shootings in Flint, including a 1-year-old boy and his 70-year-old caregiver early Monday. There have been 35 homicides so far this year in the city, surpassing the total for all of last year.

Mayor Dayne Walling has also called on community members to help fight violence. Flint Police Capt. Collin Birnie said detectives need the public's help to close cases.

Published: Thu, Aug 13, 2015

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