State Roundup

Analysis: Many Mich. high school grads lack skills

LANSING, Mich. (AP) -- An analysis by the Michigan Department of Education says that many high schools are graduating students who are unprepared to find a job or go to college.

The Detroit Free Press and The Detroit News report Tuesday that the analysis raises concerns that Michigan high schools are awarding diplomas to students lacking in skills to succeed. The analysis looked at graduation rates from the class of 2010 and students' scores on the spring 2009 Michigan Merit Exam.

Of 568 schools that had graduation rates higher than 80 percent, 64 schools had student bodies in which fewer than 30 percent were proficient in math.

Earlier this month, the Michigan State Board of Education voted to start raising standards for what's considered a passable score on the state's standardized tests.


Tow after Michigan crash ends in auto shop tirade

AETNA TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) -- A Michigan auto shop owner says a woman apparently upset about a $225 bill for towing her car after a crash involving 50 to 60 vehicles during the recent winter storm used a baseball bat to smash windows and electronic equipment at his business.

WXMI-TV was at Weeks Towing & Auto in Mecosta County's Aetna Township, about 38 miles northeast of Grand Rapids, on Monday doing a story on Sunday's U.S. 131 crash, and caught some of the argument on video. The sheriff's department says damage is estimated at more than $5,000.

Charlie Weeks tells The Grand Rapids Press the 34-year-old smashed equipment including a computer, fax machine and coffee pot.

Sheriff's Deputy Joe Marshall tells The Associated Press he was working Tuesday morning on an arrest warrant.


Police sergeant fired over police report

WARREN, Mich. (AP) -- A 45-year-old Warren police commander has been fired because his written report about a traffic stop and a drug-related arrest didn't match separate videos of the incident.

Deputy Commissioner Louis Galasso tells The Macomb Daily of Mount Clemens that Sgt. Tim Maniere was fired Friday following an internal affairs investigation.

Galasso said a TV Warren cameraman was traveling with Maniere in July when the 15-year department veteran arrested a suspect on a felony narcotics charge.

The case was dismissed and Maniere was suspended with pay after an evidentiary hearing in January showed the video and footage from the officer's patrol car didn't match his written report.

A phone number listed in Maniere's name rang unanswered Tuesday.

The Warren Police Command Officers Association hasn't decided whether to challenge Maniere's dismissal.


Suit: Hostile workplace during 'Demoted' filming

DETROIT (AP) -- A Hollywood makeup artist is suing the producer of the "American Pie" movie franchise over what he says was a hostile work environment that included nipple-pinching and sexually explicit comments during the Michigan filming of "Demoted."

Robert Maverick claims in a lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court in Detroit that he endured numerous acts of unwelcome physical contact and verbal sexual abuse during the filming of the 2009 comedy produced by Southfield native Warren Zide.

The seven-count lawsuit seeking lost wages, benefits and damages names Parallel the Zone LLC, Parallel Media LLC and several producers and employees.

Zide asked a federal judge to dismiss the case or transfer it to California.

The Detroit News said Zide and Parallel Media officials could not be reached for comment Monday.


Detroit police: Pizza driver killed armed robber

DETROIT (AP) -- Detroit police say a pizza delivery driver shot and killed one of three men trying to rob him.

Police say three men approached the driver Sunday night, and one of them produced a handgun.

Police tell The Detroit News and the Detroit Free Press that the driver then pulled his own handgun and fatally shot the armed robber, described as in his late teens or early 20s. The other suspects fled.

Police say the driver had a license to carry a concealed weapon.

Detroit police say the other suspects fled, but officers in neighboring Harper Woods spotted and arrested them.

Detroit police say their investigation is continuing.


Pit bull euthanized after killing Kalamazoo baby

KALAMAZOO, Mich. (AP) -- Authorities in Kalamazoo police say a pet pit bull that killed a family's 10-day-old baby has been euthanized.

Police say the attack happened Saturday afternoon, and the boy was pronounced dead at the scene.

Police say the baby's mother and 2-year-old sibling were home at the time of the attack. They say the mother was asleep in another room when the dog pushed its way into the baby's room and attacked him.

WOOD-TV said Monday that the dog was euthanized. Authorities didn't release the dead baby's name.

Published: Wed, Feb 23, 2011


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