State Roundup


Snyder considering 'interlocal' bridge agreement

LANSING, Mich. (AP) -- Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder says he's considering an "interlocal agreement" between state government and Canadian officials to get a new international bridge built across the Detroit River.

The Republican governor told reporters Wednesday that he still hopes the GOP-led House and Senate will approve moving forward on a new bridge between Detroit and Windsor, Ontario. But he's also pursuing other options.

Snyder opposes efforts by the owners of the Ambassador Bridge to build a second span. They're fighting Snyder's efforts to build a separate bridge.

The Michigan Campaign Finance Network reports the Detroit International Bridge Co. has spent $1.6 million this year on TV ads opposing the new bridge Snyder and Canadian officials support.

It's also pushing a ballot proposal requiring voters' approval to build the alternative bridge.

Grand Rapids

Man gets jail time in ethnic intimidation case

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) -- A man who authorities say used racial slurs and threatened black man inside a West Michigan store has been sentenced to 9 months in jail.

WOOD-TV reports Eric Pierson was sentenced Tuesday after pleading no contest in March to charges including assault with a dangerous weapon, felonious assault and ethnic intimidation. A no contest plea is not an admission of guilt but is treated as such for sentencing purposes.

Pierson also was ordered to serve 5 years of probation.

Authorities say Pierson in December used racial slurs and pulled a knife on the man at a store in Kent County's Solon Township. He was charged in February.

Pierson has said he was drunk and didn't remember what happened. He has denied being a racist.

Hartland Township

Authorities: Student hits school worker with car

HARTLAND TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) -- A 16-year-old Michigan high school student could face charges after authorities say the car he was driving hit a 52-year-old woman working as a security officer in the school's parking lot.

WHMI-FM and the Livingston County Daily Press & Argus of Howell report the teen was driving as fast as 60 mph when he hit the woman Tuesday afternoon outside Hartland High School in Hartland Township. The school is located in Livingston County, about 40 miles northwest of Detroit.

Sheriff Bob Bezotte says witnesses reported that the Hartland Township woman was thrown into the air and landed on her head. She last was listed in critical condition at an Ann Arbor hospital, where she was taken by ambulance. Bezotte says she was in and out of consciousness afterward.


Prosecutor: No charges in death of man after fight

SAGINAW, Mich. (AP) -- A prosecutor says criminal charges won't be brought against a 42-year-old man in the October death of a 30-year-old who was punched during a bar fight.

Saginaw County Prosecutor Michael Thomas tells for a story published Wednesday that the man punched Ryan Hess in the jaw after being assaulted by Hess. Thomas says Hess was disorderly at Brant Bar in Brant Township, about 85 miles northwest of Detroit.

Authorities say Hess fell and hit his head on a metal pole or the floor. He died at a hospital.

An autopsy showed a fatal hemorrhage and skull fracture consistent with hitting the metal pole or cement floor, and inconsistent with a blow to the face.


Occupy Lansing won't be welcomed at park this year

LANSING, Mich. (AP) -- Mayor Virg Bernero says Michigan's capital city won't let the local Occupy Wall Street affiliate stay in a downtown park as it did last year.

Lansing "learned a lot last year" from the presence of Occupy Lansing members camping out at Reutter Park, Bernero chief of staff Randy Hannan told "It's problematic and it's expensive," Hannan said. The city estimated that last year's protest cost Lansing $20,000.

This year, Hannan said Lansing won't give Occupy Lansing another waiver of the 10 p.m. park closing rule.

In October, Bernero gave Occupy Lansing a permit to stay in the park and provided police protection, bathrooms and trash services. The protesters remained at the park until December.

Occupy Lansing supporters showed up at the park Saturday and were told to leave at 10 p.m. Two were ticketed when they remained.

Bernero personally spent hours attempting to persuade the Occupy Lansing protesters to leave the park, WLNS-TV reported.

Bernero "is a strong ally of the movement, and he would like them to be successful," Hannan told the Lansing State Journal. But he said the mayor would like to see the activists move on from occupying to taking direct action toward accomplishing their goals, Hannan said.

Published: Thu, May 17, 2012