crime

WOOD-TV

Social media and the internet have helped solve a Michigan-based disappearance dating back more than 30-years. 17-year old Carol Ann Cole of Kalamazoo vanished in 1980 shortly after leaving Michigan for Texas. For about as long, Louisiana authorities had been trying to identify the body of a young woman found in woods near Shreveport. Posts on Facebook and Craigslist, described as “happenstance”, helped bring together authorities and members of Cole’s family in February. It was six days after the Facebook page was launched.

Flickr - Chris Miller

Michigan has the second highest number of juvenile lifers in the U.S. Those are people who were sentenced to life in prison without parole before they turned 18. In 2012, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that sentencing laws mandating life without parole for juvenile offenders amounted to cruel and unusual punishment. Michigan was one of a few states not to apply that ruling retroactively. But now, a case before the U.S. Supreme Court could determine whether those juvenile lifers sentenced before 2012 will get a shot at release.

Kevin Lavery/WKAR

We’re halfway through December, and you’ve probably noticed retailers aren’t the only people competing for your cold, hard cash. ‘Tis the season for charitable organizations to ramp up their efforts to solicit donations. Most groups out there do represent worthy causes, but the holidays also tend to bring out the less-than-legitimate actors hoping to pull off the perfect scam.

Flickr - West Midlands Police

The recent deaths of Michael Brown, Eric Garner and 12-year-old Tamir Rice in Cleveland have re-ignited the debate over whether police officers should be made to wear body cameras to record their interactions. Some law enforcement agencies around the country have been experimenting with the technology. Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero is expected to announce next month that all city police will soon wear body cameras. In Ingham County, sheriff’s deputies working at the city jail are already trying them out.

Activists refer to human trafficking as “modern day slavery,” wherein people, often young and often female, are subjected into work, prostitution or other dehumanizing behavior. Michigan will be strengthening efforts to combat human trafficking in 2015. Twenty-one new laws are scheduled to take effect on January first.

Lansing Police continue investigating a string of recent shootings. Over the course of eight days in August, the city logged nine shootings. Lansing Police Chief Michael Yankowski has referred to the shootings as an anomaly, especially since department data show double digit decreases in both violent crime and homicides from 2013 to this year.

Wikimedia Commons

Authorities have charged a man who is suspected in the shooting deaths of two people yesterday: one in Lansing Township and the other in East Lansing. Only about 15 minutes separated the attacks. The first took the life of a 35-year old man who worked at a Rite Aid pharmacy on East Saginaw Street near Frandor. The second killed another man at a nearby duplex on Coolidge Road in East Lansing.

Flickr - Steve Petrucelli


Last December, some high tech grinches tried to steal Christmas for one major retailer. Computer hackers broke into the Target Corporation mainframe and downloaded some 40-million credit card numbers.  The breach was executed despite the fact that Target had installed malware detection software months before.

Flickr - MI SHPO

Last week, the Lansing State Journal wrote about the case of a 21-year old mentally ill man named Kosgar Lado who falsely confessed under police interrogation to a murder that took place in Lansing last June.

Current State #62 | April 9, 2013

Apr 9, 2013

Today on Current State: MSU plant biologist's expertise plays major role in criminal investigation;  lead poisoning down in  Detroit, but so is funding for lead cleanup; and iPad periodical developed by MSU journalism students. 

MSU botanist aids murder investigation

Apr 9, 2013
Wikimedia Commons

A Michigan State University plant biology professor is playing a unique role in piecing together a tragic West Michigan crime.  Dr. Frank Telewski is part of an effort to locate a Ludington infant who was abducted and likely killed by her father in 2011.  

 


Telewski and other professionals have analyzed bits of plant material from the suspect’s shoes in an attempt to find the location of four-month-old’s remains. Using the findings, investigators plan to narrow the search this summer.  

Creative Commons

The latest edition of the Lansing City Pulse is out today and one of the main stories is quite an interesting one.

In the process of reporting what they thought would be a rather straightforward piece that intended to highlight some of the Lansing Police Department’s cold homicide cases, City Pulse reporters Rich Tupica and Steve Miller discovered that the LPD, unlike many other police departments across the country, does not have such a cold case list readily available. This surprised them, so they changed their story to find out why.

Ex-Con Charged With Murdering Daughter, 3 months

Jan 7, 2013
southerfried / morgueFile

Lansing police say a 37-year-old ex-convict has been arrested on murder and abuse charges in the death of his 3-month-old daughter. 

Lansing Officials Report 12 Homicides In 2012

Jan 4, 2013
swatcop / morgueFile

Lansing officials say the city had 12 homicides last year, the most since 2008 when it had the same number. 

WKAR file photo

Twelve years after a tragic East Lansing crime went unpunished, Michigan elected officials want to reform a key law.  Before the end of the year, Governor Rick Snyder is expected to sign “Brandon D’Annunzio’s Law.”  The 24 year old was attacked in downtown East Lansing in 2000 and later died of his injuries.  WKAR’s Mark Bashore spoke with the young man’s mother about her efforts to get the measure passed.  

southerfried / morgueFile

A man arrested in a shooting spree that targeted motorists in southeastern Michigan has pleaded not guilty to eight counts of attempted murder. 

Jake Neher / MPRN

Police say they’ve zeroed-in on the person who defaced the state Capitol building last week with spray paint.

WKAR file photo

A news organization has found wide variations in the rates of drunken driving arrests among Michigan police agencies, with the hometowns of Michigan State University and the University of Michigan showing one of the sharpest contrasts.

Capitol Building Vandalized Overnight

Sep 6, 2012
Jake Neher / MPRN

State police are trying to find who is responsible for vandalizing the state Capitol building early Thursday morning. Facilities workers say the damage is the worst they’ve seen in decades.

WKAR file photo

Police say a Michigan State University student's Jewish religion doesn't appear to have been a factor in his assault at an off-campus party.

WKAR file photo

A Jewish student at Michigan State University says his jaw was broken in an attack by two assailants who he says displayed "religious hatred."

Kevin Rosseel / morgueFile

The Michigan Attorney General has charged four people with conspiring to commit election fraud.

Kevin Rosseel / morgueFile

The U. S. Supreme Court has struck down state laws like one in Michigan that automatically sends some juveniles to prison for life with no chance of parole.

Kevin Lavery / WKAR

An Ingham County judge has issued a delayed sentence against a Lansing teen convicted of a 2010 murder.

A prominent Lansing clergyman is calling on an Ingham County judge to be lenient in his sentencing of a juvenile convicted of murder.  The pastor and the teen’s mother say Charles T. Lewis, Jr. should not receive life without parole. 

Melissa Benmark / WKAR

Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette says he still hopes the Legislature will approve his proposal for one thousand new police officers to be hired in the state.