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State Briefs

• Feb 20, 2019 at 8:00 AM

Victims in Kent County shooting identified as mother, 3 daughters

SOLON TWP. (WZZM-TV) — A mother and her three daughters were the victims of a deadly northern Kent County shooting.

Family members have identified them as Aubrianne Moore, 28, and her three daughters: Kyrie Rodery, 8; Cassidy Rodery, 6; and Alaina Moore, 2.

All four of them were found shot to death Monday afternoon at a home on 19 Mile Road in Solon Township. Police will formally identify all of them following autopsies, which are planned for today.

Two of the girls, Cassidy and Kyrie Rodery, were also identified Tuesday by the superintendent of Tri-County Area Schools. Cassidy was in first grade at MacNaughton Elementary School and Kyrie was a third-grader at Sand Lake Elementary School.

Kent County Sheriff Michelle Lajoye-Young said they do not believe there is a suspect at large nor an urgent public safety threat.

"Murder-suicide is something that we are investigating," she said. "Obviously, it's one of the very leading things that we are considering, but it's really, really important at this stage of the investigation that we keep a wide scope and look at all possibilities"

The Sheriff's Office is investigating a second crime scene, and the children were shot somewhere different than where they were found.

Detroit City Council rejects car stunt due to Confederate flag

DETROIT (AP) — The Detroit City Council has banned a hot rod and custom car show from allowing a stunt jump to take place because some of the participating vehicles have carried Confederate imagery.

The Detroit News reported that the council on Tuesday rejected Autorama's request for permission to perform the stunt March 1 outside Cobo Center.

A replica of the car from "Smokey and the Bandit" was slated to take part. In the 1977 movie starring Burt Reynolds, the car had a Confederate flag on its license plate.

Confederate flags are seen by many as symbols of racism and reminders of America's slavery past.

Councilman Scott Benson said Autorama "has a history of supporting imagery and symbols of racism, oppression and white supremacy."

An Autorama spokeswoman declined comment on the council's decision.

US Supreme Court denies Michigan man's petition in wife's slaying

BEULAH (AP) — The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled against a man's efforts for a new trial after he was convicted of killing his wife by dragging her into a northern Michigan lake.

The court on Tuesday denied Mark Unger's petition to review a lower court's ruling.

Unger had argued that his rights were violated due to an ineffective trial lawyer. A federal appeals court last year rejected that claim, saying evidence against Unger was "overwhelming" and any failures by his lawyer were unlikely to affect the verdict in Benzie County.

Authorities have said Florence Unger of Huntington Woods was pushed in 2003 from a boathouse roof and dragged into Lower Herring Lake, where she drowned. Unger's lawyers argued that she accidentally fell and died from injuries. She was seeking a divorce.

Weightlifter credited for helping save motorist after crash

YPSILANTI TWP. (AP) — A weightlifter from Michigan is being credited for helping to save a motorist by lifting a wrecked SUV off him following a crash.

Ryan Belcher recounted jumping into action Feb. 14 in an interview with MLive.com and said he met over the weekend with the hospitalized man that he helped save. Belcher said the 36-year-old man was "teary-eyed" when they talked Sunday at a hospital.

Belcher, 29, said instinct took over when he came upon the rollover crash in Ypsilanti Township, about 30 miles west of Detroit.

The Belleville man said he "just kind of got tunnel vision," grabbed the back of the SUV and lifted. He said the SUV rotated enough for bystanders to free the man.

The crash is under investigation.

Michigan agency awards grants for Lansing redevelopment

LANSING (AP) — State grants totaling $2 million have been awarded to help redevelop contaminated property in Lansing.

The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality is providing grants to clean up previous locations of businesses including gasoline stations, auto service and sales operations, and a lumber and coal storage facility. They were on Michigan Avenue in the city's downtown.

The grants will pay to help remove polluted soil, manage tainted groundwater and install a ventilation system, as well as demolition of vacant structures.

A company plans to construct a four-story building on the site with residential apartments, a hotel and a grocery store.

The city has approved a brownfield plan to help pay for other environmental costs and site improvements.

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