Associated Press

mprn.org

Prosecutors want to keep a former state senator off the Detroit City Council general election ballot after he finished second in Tuesday's primary despite serving a 10-month sentence for shooting at his ex-wife's car.
 
     A plea agreement called for Virgil Smith to quit the Senate and not seek elective office while on probation for five years, but a judge threw out those terms, saying he could not force Smith from the office. Smith eventually resigned.
 

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos is distancing herself from her comment earlier this year about the nation's historically black colleges and universities being pioneers of school choice, saying that in the past "there were no choices" for African-Americans in higher education. DeVos tells The Associated Press , 

"These HBCUs provided choices for black students that they didn't have." She alienated many African-Americans in February when she described historically black colleges as "real pioneers when it comes to school choice."

Have trees around your house? Take a few minutes to check them for an invasive beetle. The request comes from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, which has designated August as National Tree Check Month. In Michigan, officials are primarily worried about the Asian longhorned beetle. The distinctively large, shiny black beetles have random white blotches or spots. 

A new computer application enables Michigan residents to help conserve fish and wildlife by reporting what they see while out in the field. The Eyes in the Field app replaces 15 separate forms that the state Department of Natural Resources previously used to gather this kind of information.

Flint voters have approved updating the city's 43-year-old charter with changes including stronger ethics standards and a requirement to create a water bill assistance plan. The Flint Journal reports preliminary results showed the proposed charter was approved, with about 64 percent in support.

lansingstatejournal.com

Authorities say no charges will be brought in connection with mishandled evidence by a Michigan sheriff's department that led to the dismissal of roughly 80 cases.
 
     Ingham County Sheriff Scott Wrigglesworth said in a release Tuesday he spoke with Washtenaw County Prosecutor Brian Mackie, who reviewed the case. Washtenaw Chief Assistant Prosecutor Steven Hiller confirmed the conversation and conclusion that charges wouldn't be brought.
 

A man charged in connection with two slayings in Michigan will undergo a competency examination. A a St. Joseph County judge on Tuesday ordered the psychiatric evaluation to determine whether 32-year-old Zachary Patten is competent to stand trial. His preliminary examination scheduled for next week has been postponed. Patten was charged last month in the July 20 fatal shooting of 31-year-old Graciela Portillo-Esparza. 

A southeastern Michigan woman accused of having sex with two teenage boys has been sentenced to up to 15 years prison in the case. The Ann Arbor News reports 38-year-old Brooke L. Lajiness of Lima Township learned her punishment on Monday in a Washtenaw County courtroom. Lajiness read from a statement, calling what happened "the biggest regret of my life." She says she caused her family "great pain."

Michigan Department of Civil Rights officials say a veteran's front-yard sign advertising the sale of his home violates state and federal anti-discrimination laws because it indicates the owner won't sell to foreigners. A column in the Lansing State Journal says James Prater's sign in front of his home in Mason says "Terms No foreigners Iraq vet" next to "For Sale by Owner." 

nbcnews.com

Federal officials say restitution claims are being approved in the case of a Detroit-area doctor who put patients through needless cancer treatments.
 
     The U.S. Attorney's Office in Detroit said Monday about three-quarters of the claims submitted so far have been approved. They have been filed by or on behalf of former patients of Farid Fata, who is serving a 45-year prison sentence.
 

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