Local News Archives

South Haven Leaders Talk Weekend Violence

South Haven city leaders are reviewing their options following Sunday’s disturbance at North Beach. The beach was evacuated and more than 50 arrests were made when fights broke out in the crowd and glass bottles started getting thrown around leading up to the Light Up the Lake fireworks show. Acting Police Chief Natalie Thompson says she’s planning meetings with the public and other law enforcement agencies to find a strategy for next year.... [Read Full Story]

Benton Harbor Farmers Market To Open Wednesday

The Benton Harbor Farmers Market will reopen for the summer Wednesday. Located at Dwight P. Mitchell City Center Park downtown, the farmers market will feature fresh fruits and vegetables from local growers on sale each Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The market accepts Bridge Cards, as well as Senior Project FRESH and WIC coupons. In addition to the food for sale, the market will feature cooking demonstrations, taste tests, and games for children. The Benton Harbor Farmers Market is operated by the Berrien County Health Department and supported with grants from Be Healthy Berrien through the United Way. It will be open each Wednesday through the end of September.... [Read Full Story]

Seat Belt Use Up In Michigan

The use of seat belts is up among Michigan drivers. The Michigan Office of Highway Safety Planning says it went up nearly 2% from 2015 to 2016. Spokesperson Anne Readett says a study by University of Michigan finds it’s at 94.5%. She notes that’s better than most other states, although ideally, all drivers would buckle up.... [Read Full Story]

Report Highlights Michigan’s Effort To Fight Opioid Abuse

Michigan is among the states taking strong action to fight opioid abuse. A legislative review from Stateline, a project of The Pew Charitable Trusts, highlights several bills introduced in the state this year that would stem the prescription of pain medication and help those who are addicted. Executive Director Scott Greenberger says the number of overdose deaths from opioids has skyrocketed in recent years and almost every state is doing something.... [Read Full Story]

Pscholka: US-31 To Be Completed

A long-awaited road construction project in southwest Michigan is finally set to get started. State Representative Al Pscholka says the Michigan Department of Transportation’s next five-year plan includes the completion of US-31, connecting the highway to I-94. He says the work is several decades in the making.... [Read Full Story]

Near-Record Mega Millions Jackpot Tonight

The Mega Millions lottery jackpot is at a near record for tonight’s drawing. Michigan Lottery Spokesperson Jeff Holyfield says it’s now $454 million, the highest it’s been all year. Tickets are selling at a quick pace, as Holyfield notes people like to imagine all of the ways their lives would change if they won that much money.... [Read Full Story]

No Major Problems At Silver Beach For Independence Day

The Berrien County Sheriff’s Department says it was a peaceful Fourth of July weekend at Silver Beach. The department this year stepped up patrols at the county park in St. Joseph after a disturbance prior to last year’s fireworks show. It says, in all, 28 citations were issued, 24 of them for having alcohol on the beach. In addition, 15 arrests were made over the weekend, all misdemeanors that included possession of marijuana, minor in possession, and drunk driving. The sheriff’s department adds it responded to 21 service calls at the beach, many of which were missing children and all of whom were found. It thanks its partner agencies and southwest Michigan residents for helping to keep Independence Day safe.... [Read Full Story]

Paw Paw Lotto Winners Buy Local Bar

A million-dollar Powerball win three years ago by a Paw Paw couple has resulted in them buying the bar where they purchased their lucky ticket. The story of Jeff and Robin McCarty is being highlighted this week by the Michigan Lottery as one of the success stories of the multi-state game. They kept their jobs and used their winnings to buy a new house, and then this spring purchased Mike’s North 40 on M-40 in Paw Paw. The name was changed slightly to McCarty’s North 40, and now they run it together. Jeff McCarty tells Michigan Lottery officials they used to joke with the previous owner about buying the establishment, and got serious about it last year.... [Read Full Story]

South Haven Police To Discuss North Beach Riot

South Haven Police will be holding a debriefing this week to talk about the riots on North Beach that resulted in the use of pepper spray, and a decision to evacuate the thousands there Sunday night prior to their big fireworks show. The goal will be to determine if they could have done something better. North Beach was closest to the launch site and the most crowded, and Sergeant Kyle Griffith says they had brought in extra officers from all over in anticipation of a huge crowd.... [Read Full Story]

Three Straight Weeks Of Gas Price Declines

Gas prices in Michigan are down 11¢ a gallon to start the week at $2.35. Triple-A Michigan notes it’s the third straight week of declines, and prices are 60¢ lower than this time a year ago. Traverse City has the state’s lowest average price for the third week in a row at $2.20, while Marquette drivers pay the most at $2.42. In St. Joseph and Benton Harbor, our prices average $2.23, down 15¢ over the past week. GasBuddy says five stations in Dowagiac are under $2 per gallon, while South Haven’s prices are at $2.09 and $2.10. The Dowagiac stations are the state’s lowest prices. While a federal report shows gasoline demand in the U.S. is at an all-time high, refineries are increasing output and supply is keeping pace.... [Read Full Story]

Boat Fire Under Investigation

Investigators are working to figure out what caused a fire to start on a 48-foot Jefferson boat at the Pier 33 Marina on Saturday. The St. Joseph Department of Public Safety says the boat was left unusable by the damage, though they got the flames under control in about 20 minutes. The fire was contained to the engine compartment and rear bedroom area. Everyone who was on board was able to get off the boat without anyone getting hurt. Fire crews were called to the scene just after 1:30 p.m. and are still investigating the blaze.... [Read Full Story]

North Beach In South Haven Evacuated Before Fireworks

Several people are in police custody and at least three were hurt, including a police officer, in a massive melee on North Beach in South Haven just before the Light up the Lake fireworks Sunday night. South Haven Police evacuated the beach around 10 p.m. after the fights broke out. Michigan State Police were also called in to help with getting everyone off the beach. Bottles where thrown before police made the decision to close North Beach to the public. A similar situation marred the fireworks in St. Joseph last year at Silver Beach County Park, but no evacuations were made in that case.... [Read Full Story]

Couple Accused Of Animal Abuse Has History Of It

The couple charged with animal neglect this week for keeping 108 dogs in their Lawrence Township home has apparently done this sort of thing before. Melissa Copen and husband Donald Smith were cited in 2001 in Allegan, and got the charges dropped by reimbursing the county for the cost of medical care for the 25 dogs and 30 cats that were taken from their home back then. Copen insists they have been trying hard to take care of the animals.... [Read Full Story]

Major Delays for Queen’s Cup Race

Lack of wind caused major delays for racers in the annual Queen’s Cup yacht race. It got underway Friday morning in Milwaukee and was supposed to end Saturday morning in St. Joseph. By 11:00am, there were only two racers who had completed. Denny Dryer is from Grand Haven and has been a participant in the race for the past 32 years. He explains what racers do when there is no wind…... [Read Full Story]

Last Kalamazoo Bike Tragedy Survivor Is Home

The last of the four survivors of Kalamazoo’s bicycle tragedy has returned to his home in Richland, not entirely healed, but well enough. Paul Gobble says in a Facebook post that he can’t drive or work and is still wearing braces on his neck, back and leg but he is home. Five people died in that horrible collision. The 47-year-old was the most seriously injured when police say that Edward Pickett Jr. crashed into Gobble and 8 other members of the Chain Gang bike club on North Westnedge. Three weeks ago as they were pedaling north along the side of the road. Tests show that Pickett was on drugs at the time of the crash. He is currently undergoing mental exams to determine if he is competent to stand trial on 15 separate felony counts, including second degree murder.... [Read Full Story]

Hartford Breaking & Entering Investigated

At some point between June 13 and 23, somebody got into a storage shed in Hartford and made off with five saddles, a tack bag, two 10-by-20-foot pop-up canopies and a heavy duty Power Systems diesel generator. The Van Buren County Sheriff’s Department says they don’t yet have any suspects in the breaking-and-entering. Investigators say someone pried open the door to steal the items. It happened in the 68-thousand block of 60th Street, and anyone with information on the incident is asked to call the Van Buren County Sheriff’s Department.... [Read Full Story]

Massive Fire At PADNOS Recycling Facility Near Grand Rapids

An investigation is underway to determine what caused a big fire at a recycling center near Grand Rapids overnight. Walker Fire Chief Robert Walker says flames shot nearly 100 feet in the air from the fire at PADNOS Iron and Metal in a scrap of old cars and refrigerators. He says the company’s practices of keeping recyclable material separated helped their efforts.... [Read Full Story]

One Killed In Lincoln Township Crash

One man is dead in a fatal crash in Lincoln Township. The Lincoln Charter Township Police Department report the crash was at the intersection of Cleveland Avenue and Linco Road around 11:15 Thursday morning. When they arrived, they determined that a car being operated by Albert Schroeder of Saint Joseph pulled into the path of a car being driven by Michael Foulk of Rogers Arkansas. Schroeder was pronounced dead by Lakeland Hospital staff a few hours later. His wife, Lean Schroeder remains in critical condition. Foulk was transported to the hospital with what appeared to be non-life threating injuries. Both drivers and a front seat passenger in the Schroeder vehicle were injured in the crash and had to be removed by the Lincoln Township Fire Department using the jaws equipment. All three were transported to Lakeland Medical Center in St. Joseph. All persons involved were wearing seatbelts and vehicle airbags were deployed. Speed and alcohol are not believed to be factors in this incident. The crash remains under investigation.... [Read Full Story]