Daily Briefs

Anti-abortion ballot drives to start soon

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Groups backing two anti-abortion ballot drives in Michigan are poised to begin gathering signatures after clearing procedural steps.

The bipartisan Board of State Canvassers on Tuesday approved 100-word summaries that will appear atop the petitions. They also OK’d the petition forms.

One measure would prohibit abortion at the detection of a fetal heartbeat, except if the mother faces a serious health risk. Another measure would ban a common second-trimester abortion procedure known as dilation and evacuation — which critics call “dismemberment — except to save the mother’s life.

Abortion-rights advocates opposed how officials wrote the summaries, calling some wording “intentionally provocative” and misleading. The board made one change but otherwise backed the language.

The initiatives could be enacted by the Republican-led Legislature without the signatures of Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.


Michigan prisoners placed in segregation over Facebook page

CARSON CITY, Mich. (AP) — The Corrections Department says a phone smuggled into a Michigan prison might have been used by an inmate to create a Facebook page.

The page, titled “Freeweezy Lethimgo,” includes photos and video of a prisoner getting a haircut and smoking something.

Spokesman Chris Gautz tells the Detroit Free Press that 10 prisoners at the Carson City Correctional Center have been placed in segregation. Gautz says 25-year-old Dajuan Furman, who has “Weezy” tattooed on his arm, is considered a key offender.

Gautz suggests prison staff also could be in trouble. He says someone should have noticed loud music, too many prisoners in one cell and a window being covered up.

The spokesman described the behavior as “incredibly dangerous.”


Court won’t reopen case over marking tires for parking enforcement

SAGINAW, Mich. (AP) — A federal court won’t reopen a dispute about whether a Michigan city violates the U.S. Constitution by marking tires to enforce parking rules.

In April, a three-judge panel at the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said chalking tires qualifies as a search of property and could be illegal without a warrant. Saginaw responded by asking the full court to set aside the decision and start over.

But the court said Tuesday there’s no interest among the judges. The case now will return to a federal judge in Bay City for more work. Separately, lawsuits have been filed against other Michigan cities.

Opinions from the 6th Circuit set law in Michigan and three other states. But Saginaw says there’s been a national impact with many U.S. cities changing parking enforcement because of the decision.


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