State Roundup

Shingleton
Police: Iraq War vet thwarts gas station break-in

SHINGLETON, Mich. (AP) — Police say an Iraq War veteran thwarted two would-be burglars at his northern Michigan gas station by kicking one of them and ordering them away with an AR-15 rifle.
State police said Shawn Schank was inside the gas station about 4:10 a.m. Sunday in Shingleton, an Upper Peninsula community in Alger County, when two people wearing ski masks forced their way into the building and approached the cash register.
Police say Schank kicked one of them, retrieved the AR-15 from his office and ordered the burglars to leave.
Police say one of the burglars took off his mask and pleaded with Schank not to shoot him before both suspects fled on foot.
Police say they arrested a 17-year-old from Shingleton and an 18-year-old from Munising. They're jailed pending charges.

Grand Haven
Ex-deacon gets jail in theft from Michigan church

GRAND HAVEN, Mich. (AP) — A former West Michigan church deacon who authorities say took $120,000 in cash from the weekly offertory basket has been sentenced to a year in jail.
The Muskegon Chronicle reports 73-year-old Joseph Finnigan was sentenced Monday in Ottawa County Circuit Court. He also was ordered to repay the money.
Finnigan told the court that he took full responsibility for his actions, saying he was "truly sorry" for violating the law and violating the trust of parishioners.
Finnigan earlier pleaded guilty to two counts of larceny over $20,000.
Finnigan had worked as a deacon at St. Patrick's Catholic Church in Grand Haven for 11 years before being fired in November.
Authorities say the thefts took place from 2007 to 2012.

Grand Rapids
2 convicted in Grand Valley student adviser death

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) — Two Grand Rapids men have been convicted of murder in the fatal stabbing of a longtime Grand Valley State University student adviser at his home.
Separate juries in Kent County Circuit Court convicted Timothy Miller and Maceo Scott of murder and armed robbery in the death of 50-year-old Santiago Zapata, who was found slain Sept. 25. They face mandatory terms of life in prison without parole when sentenced June 6.
The verdicts were announced Monday. Authorities have said Miller and Scott each blamed the other for Zapata's death.
Grand Valley State University says Zapata was a 19-year employee with its education college.

Charlotte
Man convicted in 2011 slaying of ex-trooper, wife

CHARLOTTE, Mich. (AP) — A man who authorities say created a fake job to gain work release from jail and then killed a former Michigan state trooper and his wife has been convicted of murder and gun charges.
The jury in Eaton County Circuit Court returned the verdict Monday in the case against 39-year-old Christopher Perrien. He'll get life in prison without parole when sentenced May 9.
Sixty-two-year-old Michael Greene and 46-year-old Terri Greene were shot Sept. 22, 2011, at their Delta Township home.
Defense lawyer William Hankins says prosecutors didn't present evidence directly placing Perrien at the scene.
Court records say Perrien told a judge he worked for a nonexistent company to gain release from the Eaton County jail.
Perrien was sentenced in September to 20-30 years' imprisonment in a separate home invasion.

Lansing
Veterans agency moving to new downtown facility

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — A 3-month-old state agency established to help military veterans get the federal benefits they've earned is moving to downtown Lansing.
The Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency will move into its new location Wednesday. The agency currently is sharing space with the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs in another Lansing location outside downtown.
Those unable to reach the agency in coming days are urged to send a message through the agency website or its Facebook page. The web addresses are www.michigan.gov/veterans and www.facebook.com/midmva .
In January, Gov. Rick Snyder signed an executive order creating the Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency. It helps connect former service personnel with government departments and service organizations that can help them apply for benefits such as health care, education and employment assistance.

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