(MARLETTE) -- Marlette placed 3rd at the Michigan High School Quiz Bowl State Championship this past weekend at Michigan State University in East Lansing. The Marlette team won individual medals, a team trophy, and team member Adam Krause was placed on the State Quiz Bowl All-Star Team. Adam is the son of Brian and Brenda Krause. He will be attending MSU in the fall.
Marlette was one of the last two teams to make it to the end of the bracket in Friday's competition. The team had four wins on their way to face off against Utica Academy. Even though Marlette lost in the final match, the team earned a spot in the semifinals on Saturday afternoon. Marlette is only the third school to win a trophy in the 27-year history of high school quiz bowl championship tournaments at the state level. Brown City took second in 1997 and a team from Sandusky took third in 2008. The State Quiz Bowl Championship originated in 1987 and was sponsored by former State Senator Dan DeGrow and SC4. It has been held at Michigan State University since 1997.
Other thumb-area schools that participated last weekend included Sandusky, Yale, Bad Axe, North Branch, and Carsonville-Port Sanilac.
(HURON COUNTY) -- Two Elkton area residents were arrested Thursday afternoon after a lengthy investigation involving the trafficking and distribution of heroin in Huron County. According to Huron County Sheriff Kelly Hanson, deputies and Elkton Police confronted two suspects in the parking lot of Elkton's McKinley Street Apartments and shortly thereafter, located nearly five grams of heroin in the suspects' vehicle with a street value of nearly $5,000. Police also searched the couple's apartment and found a white powdery substance, scales, syringes and other drug paraphernalia. Police arrested 29-year-old Angela Palmer and 22-year-old Brad Labombard on multiple felony drugs charges. Palmer's bond was set at $10,000 while Labombard's bond was set at $7,500. Both remain lodged in the Huron County Jail. Police also contacted the Department of Human Services as two minor children at the scene were turned over to relatives. A second warrant was served at a home on Myrtle Drive in Oliver Township where police found drug paraphernalia, syringes and prescription pills. Future charges may result from that search and the Department of Human Services is also being contacted to investigate minor children at that location. A third search warrant for a vehicle turned up $33 in cash and packaging materials.
(AREA) -- Governor Rick Snyder has signed legislation intended to crack down on sales of stolen scrap metal. Michigan scrapyards that buy copper wire, air conditioners and catalytic converters will only be able to pay sellers by mail for sales of more than $25. Scrapyards will have to take photos or video of metal they buy. Sellers could only be paid by check or money order, or they could redeem their money at an onsite ATM. Snyder and Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan called for action on the issue that was worked on for more than 2 1/2 years before legislators struck a deal last month. Thieves are targeting abandoned dwellings to strip copper wiring and other metal. The number of reported crimes nearly tripled between 2011 and 2012. State Representative Paul Muxlow of Brown City sponsored the legislation.
PICTURED: Gov. Rick Snyder shakes hands with State Representative Paul Muxlow, R-Brown City, after signing legislation cracking down on scrap metal theft. The new law requires the scrap metal industry to mail payments for any sales over $25 involving air conditioning components, catalytic converters or copper wire – the three most often stolen metal components. Representative Muxlow praised the work completed by a bipartisan work group that involved legislators, law enforcement officials and members of the scrap metal industry.
(AREA) -- Medicare's massive claims database lists a Detroit-area cancer doctor accused of intentionally misdiagnosing patients and ordering unnecessary treatments. Farid Fata, among the top billers, is awaiting trial on federal charges. He says he's innocent. Fata was arrested last August. He's accused of committing fraud to enrich himself through health insurance programs. The government says his practice billed Medicare $225 million from August 2007 to July 2013. He could face trial this year. An analysis by The Associated Press found that a tiny group, 344 out of more than 825,000 doctors, received $3 million or more apiece in 2012- a threshold that raises eyebrows for the government's own investigators. Overall, about 2 percent of clinicians accounted for one-fourth of payments. The government says Fata ripped off Medicare by giving chemotherapy to patients who didn't need it and diagnosing cancer when it wasn't apparent. Fata owned Michigan Hematology Oncology, which has an office in Lapeer.
(PORT HURON) -- A Port Huron Northern High School senior is among 1,800 students who will receive a national Scholastic Art and Writing Awards gold medal in June for her digital artwork. Katie Hunckler's work was chosen from 255,000 students nationwide. Hunckler's "Bits and Pieces" used spiral designs to create a portrait on Adobe Illustrator. It received a golden key award in regional competition in January, and a gold medal in nationals in March. Hunckler will be honored at a ceremony in June at Carnegie Hall in New York City. Her work will be on display for up to two years at Parsons The New School for Design.
(AREA) -- What were you doing 40 years ago today? Chances are, if you were a Thumb area resident, you were heading for Sandusky, Bad Axe or Cass City to see President Richard Nixon. The late President, who was in the midst of the Watergate scandal, visited the solidly-Republican Thumb area campaigning on behalf of Republican James Sparling who was in a hotly contested race with Democrat Bob Traxler to fill the seat of 8th District Congressman James Harvey, who had resigned. Nixon spoke first in Bad Axe and then in Cass City along the way to Sandusky. Nixon stopped to visit with well-wishers at many small communities in the Thumb including Wilmot, Lamotte Township, Snover, Decker, and Elmer.
The President's longest speech, about 10 minutes, was here in Sandusky.
For 48 hours prior, law enforcement officers were preparing for the President's arrival. The secret service assigned officers on top of the buildings in Sandusky, schools were off for the day so students could see the president, and many merchants reported record-setting sales as thousands came to Sandusky. News persons including Dan Rather and Tom Brokaw were among the hundreds of media personnel that included all of major television stations in Michigan. Bob Traxler won the election and Nixon resigned from office 40-years ago in August.
(AREA) -- Bird lovers can join viewing tours in April and May at waterfowl areas managed by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. The DNR's Wetland Wonders program focuses on locations in the southern part of the state. They include St. Clair Flats State Wildlife Area on Harsens Island; and Shiawassee River State Game Area. Species that might be seen range from diving ducks to trumpeter and tundra swans, osprey, bald eagles and sandhill cranes. DNR biologists and technicians lead the tours.
(LAPEER COUNTY) -- An anonymous Lapeer county resident claimed a $126,946 prize from the Michigan Lottery Monday. The player matched all five winning numbers from the March 31st drawing: 1, 9, 15, 35, and 39. The winning ticket was sold at the Imlay City Kroger store. More than $1.2 million in Michigan Lottery prizes were claimed Monday at lottery headquarters.
(FORT GRATIOT) -- A St. Clair County Sheriff Deputy was involved in a traffic crash Monday evening in Fort Gratiot Township. Sheriff Tim Donnellon says Deputy Dan Bueche was heading southbound on 24th Avenue to assist another officer responding to a holdup alarm at the Speedy Q Market on Water Street shortly before 8:00 p.m. Witnesses report that Deputy Bueche came to a complete stop with his patrol car's emergency lights and siren on at the intersection of 24th and Keewahdin. As Deputy Bueche continued southbound through the intersection, he struck an eastbound vehicle driven by 59-year old Esther Brookins of Fort Gratiot Township in the driver's side door. Brookins stated she did not see top lights or heard a siren prior to the crash. Brookins and her passenger, 70-year old Gerald Brookins, also of Fort Gratiot Township, were transported by Tri-Hospital EMS to Port Huron Hospital for treatment of unspecified injuries. Deputy Bueche was not injured in the crash. After the accident, it was learned that the alarm at the Speedy Q Market on Water Street was in fact false, and that the incident was handled by officers already at the scene. Fort Gratiot Fire and Rescue assisted at the scene of the crash.
(AREA) -- Despite this winter's very cold and snowy weather, work on the 140-mile Thumb Loop high-voltage transmission project is on schedule as it enters its next-to-last year of construction. ITC Transmission says work has started on the final line segment, which is about 56 miles from the Rapson substation near Bad Axe, south through Sanilac County to the Greenwood substation in St. Clair County. Crews are drilling and pouring foundations in Huron County and poles are being hauled to their locations along the line right-of-way. This section includes the new Banner substation near Sandusky. Line work in Sanilac County will get underway in the next few weeks. The entire Thumb Loop project is expected to be complete and in service on schedule in 2015. The line will tie Thumb wind farms into the state's electrical grid. The Thumb Loop runs from Tuscola County through Huron and Sanilac counties and ends in St. Clair County. The St. Clair County substation Fitz in Wales Township should be finished this summer.