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January 16, 2023

City Council Approves Islamic Animal Sacrifices

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY…
1793: French King Louis XVI sentenced to death by the National Convention during the French Revolution.

In Michigan, the Hamtramck City Council voted to allow the religious sacrifice of animals on residential property.

The all-Muslim city council voted 3-2 to amend a city ordinance to allow the practice following several months of heated debate and pressure from Muslim residents, the Detroit Free Press reported.

Muslims often slaughter animals, typically goats or sheep, during the Eid al-Adha holiday. Hamtramck has one of the highest percentage of Muslim residents in the country.

“If somebody wants to do it, they have a right to do their practice,” Councilman Mohammed Hassan said during the meeting.

Those opposed to the ordinance change say that it will lead to animal cruelty or sanitation problems in the city. They’re also worried about people being traumatized by seeing slaughtered goats, lambs, and cows in backyards, and the bloody scene the practice leaves behind.

Councilman Nayeem Choudhury said this is an issue of religious freedom.

“Our rights come first,” he said, adding that he was “born … Muslim, and that’s my faith, and I will stick with my same faith.”

Hamtramck residents will be required to notify the city, pay a fee, and make their property available for inspection.

Hamtramck has a population 28,000. More than half of the residents are of Yemeni or Bangladeshi descent, according to the Free Press.


Source: Detroit Free Press

January 10, 2023

Elderly Couple Says Lowe’s Refuses to Refund $4,000 Purchase That Never Arrived

If you’re planning on making home improvements this year, you might be considering heading to Lowe’s. But there are some alarming customer complaints you should be aware of before forking over any of your hard-earned cash.

Michigan’s John and Carol Gee, a married couple in their 70s, recently came forward with complaints about Lowe’s, saying that the company lied to them about a refund.

“This has been a nightmare that we would never imagine would happen,” Carol told local ABC-affiliate WZZM.

The Gees said they often shop at the Lowe’s near their home in Sparta, but the retailer owes them over $4,000 for a sliding patio door they ordered in Dec. 2021. Six months later, an installation technician and the door arrived, but the door was broken.

“The guy who came to install it checked the slider out,” John said. “The slider was damaged in five different spots, so he took pictures and sent them all back to Lowe’s.” He added that the door was returned to the retailer and marked as damaged.

The Gees said they received another door from the retailer a couple months later — but it was the wrong one. “It didn’t have the sliders in it, and it was the wrong size,” John said.

The incorrect replacement door was also returned, and a third door was ordered. But when the installation tech came back to install it in fall 2022, John said Lowe’s had never delivered another replacement slider door to be installed.

Since then, the Gees say they’ve called “every week” to try to get a refund for the door that never arrived, worth more than $4,000. So far, they say they’ve gotten nothing but “false promises.”

The Gees told WZZM that Lowe’s says a refund check is on the way, but at this point, they’ll believe it when they see it.

“We’re on a fixed income. We’re both retired. We don’t have money to throw away, especially $4,000,” Carol said. “We have health problems like anyone in their 70s, so it’s added stress to our life. We’re not troublemakers, we’re not trying to make trouble. We just want to be treated fair.”

The Gees aren’t the only customers to have complaints with Lowe’s.

For instance, the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office has received more than 340 complaints about Lowe’s since 2016. In Florida, 223 consumers have requested the state’s Attorney General to investigate issues with the retailer since 2019.


Source: Best Life | WZZM

December 25, 2022

Mom Charged for “Catfishing” Her Own Daughter

Police in Isabella County, Michigan, arrested a woman for allegedly catfishing two teenagers, including her own daughter.

Kendra Licari, 42, was arrested after a year-long investigation that began last December when a Beal City Schools received a complaint that Licari’s daughter and her boyfriend were being cyberbullied.

“When the case first came into our office, it was bizarre and almost hard to believe,” said David Barberi, Isabella County’s prosecutor.

Authorities say Licari was engaged in an elaborate scheme to frame other teenagers for the online harassment. Licari was the Beal City girls basketball coach at the time.

Barberi confirmed that Licari and the other student’s mother cooperated with school officials during the initial investigation. But the school passed the complaint to local law enforcement in Jan. 2022, given that most of the messages didn’t occur on school property or devices.

Licari allegedly used virtual private networks to mask her location and identity, and also adapted age-appropriate slang and abbreviations to appear as a teenager.

“By and large it was mostly just harassing type text messages, demeaning, demoralizing, and just mean texts,” Barberi said.

Prosecutors compiled 349 pages of harassing social media and text messages, Barberi said.

“We’re talking about several hundreds of text messages, over 1,000 pages of discovery in the case,” Barberi said. “As it related to communications between the suspect and the victims in this matter.”

In mid-April 2021, local law enforcement turned to the FBI’s computer crime division. FBI analysts identified Licari’s IP addresses as the ones used to send the messages.

Barberi said that Licari made a full confession when confronted.

She was arrested and charged with two counts of stalking a minor, two counts of using a computer to commit a crime, and one count of obstruction of justice.

Licari was released on a $5,000 bond. She is due back in court on Dec. 29 to determine whether there is sufficient evidence for a trial.

If convicted, Licari faces up to 10 years for the computer crime charge and five years for each separate count of stalking and obstruction.


Sources: WWTV | The Morning Sun

December 20, 2022

Fatal Shooting Incident at Michigan Police Station

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY…
1803: French flag lowered in New Orleans to mark the formal transfer of the Louisiana Purchase from France to USA, purchased for $15M.

A 33-year-old man is dead after he walked into the lobby of a police station in Michigan and attempted to fire a gun, authorities said.

Dearborn Police Department officials said the suspect, Ali Naji, walked in through the front entrance of the station in Dearborn — just a few miles outside of Detroit — at about 3:30 p.m. on Sunday. Then, he pulled out a concealed handgun and pointed it at an officer standing behind the desk, about 5 feet away.

“The individual attempted to fire the gun at the officer, prompting the officer to discharge multiple rounds that struck the individual,” Dearborn Police Chief Issa Shahin said.

Naji was transported to a hospital, where he later died from his injuries. No officers were harmed during the incident, police said.

The Dearborn Police Department lobby was closed after the fatal shooting, but reopened to the public on Monday afternoon.

A motive for the incident was not immediately clear. Michigan State Police (MSP) are now investigating the shooting.

On Monday, the MSP noted that the 9mm gun used by Naji was stolen about an hour before the incident.


Source: Fox 2

November 1, 2022

Obama Heckled During Campaign Rally

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY…
1952: “Ivy Mike”, the first thermonuclear weapon to utilize the H-bomb design of Edward Teller and Stanislaw Ulam, is detonated in the Marshall Islands, Pacific Ocean.

Former President Barack Obama was interrupted by a heckler at a Democratic campaign rally in Michigan, while he was discussing the recent assault on Paul Pelosi.

Obama was in Michigan to campaign for Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) and other Democratic candidates ahead of the midterm elections. He was speaking about the attack on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s husband, saying that violent political rhetoric was to blame.

“If our rhetoric about each other gets that mean, when we don’t just disagree with people but we start demonizing, making wild, crazy allegations about them, that creates a dangerous climate,” Obama said.

“If elected officials don’t do more to explicitly reject that kind of rhetoric, if they tacitly support it or encourage their supporters to stand up outside voting places armed with guns and dressed in tactical gear, more people can get hurt,” he added.

“We got politicians who work to stir up division to try to make us angry and afraid of one another for their own advantage, and all of it gets amped up, hyped up 24/7 by social media,” Obama said. “And sometimes it can turned dangerous.”

A protester could be heard saying “Mr. President,” followed by inaudible comments.

“Sir, this is what I mean,” Obama responded.

“Sir, we’ve got a — there is a process that we set up in our democracy. Right now, I’m talking, you’ll have a chance to talk sometime soon,” he continued. “We don’t have to interrupt each other. We don’t have to shout each other down.”

The former president was interrupted roughly seven minutes later by an additional heckler, according to the New York Post.

Obama asked: “Do we have another person yelling at me? Is that what you’re doing?”


Source: New York Post | The Hill

October 25, 2022

Woman Arrested For Not Scanning All Items at Walmart Self-Checkout

A Michigan woman is being accused of stealing merchandise from Walmart by failing to scan all of her items at the store’s self-checkout.

Police said that workers from the loss prevention department at a Walmart in Alpena County noticed that TeddyJo Marie Fliam, 34, wasn’t scanning every item. When loss prevention workers confronted Fliam, she became agitated, denied the allegation, and left the store, according to Fox News.

The incident prompted store employees to review surveillance footage. The footage allegedly showed that Fliam had stolen more than $1,000 worth of Walmart merchandise since April by neglecting to scan all of her items at the self-checkout.

Police arrested Fliam at her home and charged her with first-degree retail fraud.

In 2019, Walmart implemented a system to mitigate self-checkout thefts known as Missed Scan Detection, using cameras and artificial intelligence to ensure that every bagged item has been scanned.

“Walmart is making a true investment to ensure the safety of our customers and associates,” a spokesperson said at the time. “Over the last three years, the company has invested over half a billion dollars in an effort to prevent, reduce and deter crime in our stores and parking lots. We are continuously investing in people, programs and technology to keep our stores and communities safe.”


Source: Fox News

October 24, 2022

Missing Michigan Family Baffles Police: “The Circumstances are Strange”

A Michigan family of four mysteriously has disappeared from their home, leaving investigators baffled by the “strange” circumstances.

“We’re just very concerned,” said Fremont Police Department Chief Tim Rodwell. “The circumstances are strange.”

The Fremont Police Department confirmed that the family had been spotted at a BP gas station in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula on the morning of Oct. 17, MLive reported.

The police said that gas station surveillance video shows all four members of the Cirigliano family — Anthony “Tony”, 51, Suzette, 51, Brandon, 19, and Noah, 15 — buying food and fuel.

Anthony’s phone is turned off, Rodwell said, and the other family members’ phones were found in the home. Suzette had been caring for her elderly mother, who has dementia.

On Monday, Suzette’s mother was found wandering the streets of their neighborhood in Fremont, roughly 45 miles north of Grand Rapids. Police said the family appeared to have fled abruptly without arranging care for Suzette’s mother, who is now staying with another relative.

According to Michigan State police, Tony Cirigliano exhibited “paranoid behaviors” on Oct. 16. That day, he called 911 saying he had information related to Sept. 11 and needed protection from the police.

“I need some police protection immediately,” Tony Cirigliano told the dispatcher. “It is of vital national interest. It is related to Sept. 11, and people want to erase me from the face of the earth.”

Tony Cirigliano told the dispatcher that there weren’t any weapons in the house and that everyone was ok. He asked for police to show up at his home without their lights on, so that his sons wouldn’t be alarmed.

“I’m not crazy,” Tony Cirigliano said on the 911 call. “(A specific Fremont police captain) knows me. I’m a Christian. I just need some help, and then the U.S. Government will take it from here. I know this sounds crazy. You don’t have instructions for this.”

Rodwell said that two officers visited the family home that night, and speaking with Anthony for 45 minutes and with Suzette to make sure she was alright. Police determined that no one was in imminent danger, he added.

Fremont and state police are requesting the public’s help in finding the Cirigliano family.

Tony Cirigliano is described as 5’6″, 180 pounds with brown hair and no facial hair. His wife, Suzette, is 5’9″, 120 pounds, with blond hair and glasses.

Brandon Cirigliano is 5’8″, 120 pounds with brown hair and brown eyes. Noah Cirigliano is 5’6″, 120 pounds with brown hair and brown eyes. Both of the teens have autism, state police said.

The family was last seen driving a silver 2005 Toyota Sienna with a Michigan license plate DJL 1982.

Police have asked anyone with information to call 911 or the Fremont Police Department at 231-924-2400.

October 23, 2022

Juror Dismissed From Whitmer Kidnapping Trial for Flirting With Defendant

A female juror has been dismissed from the trial of three men accused of plotting to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) after attorneys claimed she was flirting with one of the defendants.

Judge Thomas Wilson announced that he’d removed the young woman from the jury two days after attorneys raised concerns she was having too much non-verbal communication with defendant Paul Bellar, MLive reported.

“It didn’t just happen on one day — it happened over multiple days,” Wilson said. “I decided its safer to err on the side of caution.”

The judge noted that he’s never witnessed such behavior in his nearly 35-year career. He said that the juror took the decision well.

The unnamed woman smiled, nodded, and made eyes toward Bellar, the NY Daily Paper reported. Assistant Attorney General Bill Rollstin said that Bellar flirted back, winking at the juror, and even pumped his fists at her.

Bellar is standing trial with co-defendants Joseph Morrison and Pete Musico. The three are charged with providing material support for a terrorist act. The men have pleaded not guilty, claiming they were entrapped by an FBI informant and his handlers.

September 14, 2022

WATCH: Michigan Woman Says She Found a Nauseating Surprise in Her Subway Sandwich

So much for “Eat Fresh.”

A woman from Lansing, Michigan, claims she found something disgusting on her Subway sandwich wrapper.

The woman took to social media to allege that she found smeared feces on her Subway sandwich wrapper. In a video posted to TikTok, she said she went to a Subway in Lansing and had “a kind of weird interaction” before returning to her car with her order.

She returned to the parking lot to eat her sub in her car, but she noticed an awful smell as she started to eat. She thought the parking lot smelled like sewage or something similar, so she wrapped up her sandwich and went home to eat.

But once she got home and went to bite her sandwich, she noticed that same unpleasant sewage smell. That’s when she made the horrifying discovery.

“I look in the paper, and in between the two wrappers on the sandwich is literal sh-t. There’s feces,” she says in the video. She said she’s mortified by the situation, but she turned to TikTok to gain Subway’s attention.

@kelscoin don’t eat at @subway ♬ original sound – kels

The woman posted a follow-up video, saying there hasn’t been a solution despite the police and health department since getting involved.

“My biggest thing is the corporation … I don’t understand how they couldn’t address it, like reach out to me … I’ve heard absolutely nothing from anybody,” she said.


Source: Mashed

September 4, 2022

Michigan Police Investigating Illegal Sale of Voting Machine

In Michigan, authorities are investigating an incident wherein a stolen voting machine was listed for sale online.

The Cadillac News reported that Wexford County Clerk Alaina Nyman had confirmed that a voting machine had gone missing and resurfaced in an online auction.

Goodwill Industries had placed the Dominion voting machine for sale in an online auction after it was dropped off at a Goodwill thrift store in Cadillac, Michigan. An Ohio-based Uber driver won the auction with a bid of $7.99.

According to reports, the Ohio resident sold the voting machine for more than $1,000 to an election expert in Connecticut. At that point, Michigan officials were informed of the machine’s whereabouts.

“We are actively working with law enforcement to investigate allegations of an illegal attempt to sell a voter assist terminal acquired in Michigan,” Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson said in a statement. “Voter assist terminals are not used to tabulate ballots, but are typically used by voters with disabilities who need assistance marking their ballot privately at polling places.”

“While our elections remain secure and safe, we take seriously all violations of election law and will be working with relevant authorities to ensure there are consequences for those who break the law,” Benson said.

Michigan law prohibits citizens from withholding, breaking, or destroying voting equipment or obtaining “undue possession” of a voting machine.


Sources: Cadillac News | The Hill | Michigan Department of State

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