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Battle Creek man found after being reported missing


BATTLE CREEK, Mich. (WZZM) -- The Battle Creek Police Department says a man reported missing has been found.

John Cook, 23, had last been seen on Sunday, Dec. 20, at about 9 p.m. He left his home on Robinson after an argument. He left without wearing shoes or socks but had on a black Adidas windbreaker and dark jeans.

Cook was found near his address, police said, and was taken in for a medical evaluation.


DNA on straw leads to bank robbery conviction


KALAMAZOO, Mich. (WZZM) -- Federal prosecutors say a straw led to a guilty plea from an ex-con who committed a string of credit union robberies in Kalamazoo.

Edward Bowen, 48, pleaded guilty Monday to three robberies last year. In fact, he robbed the same place twice, the Preferred Credit Union in Kalamazoo, once in May 2014 and again in June 2015.

Investigators say in the second Preferred Credit Union robbery, Bowen had a cup with a straw, which he left near the scene. They were able to get a DNA sample from the straw and matched it to Bowen's DNA, which was in a national crime database from a 1996 conviction for assault with intent to murder. They were also able to get Bowen's fingerprint from the cup.

Bowen is now facing up to 25 years in prison.


Calhoun Co. deputy arrested for alleged drunk driving


LEROY TOWNSHIP, Mich. -- A Calhoun County Sheriff Department deputy was taken to the Kalamazoo County jail early Friday morning after he was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of liquor.

Sheriff Matt Saxton said the male officer was off-duty when he was found unresponsive in his personal car at the intersection of 4 Mile Road and H Drive South in Calhoun County's Leroy Township.

Saxton said the case remains under investigation by Michigan State Police and exact charges are pending.

The deputy has been placed on paid administrative leave, which is part of his union contract, while the department's Office of Professional Standards conducts its own internal investigation.


Investigators interview witness in 1983 vehicle death case


VICKSBURG, Mich. (AP) -- Investigators are getting fresh information about the 1983 death of a man who may have been intentionally struck by a vehicle in southwestern Michigan.


Kalamazoo County sheriff's investigators have said they believe 16-year-old Erik Cross was intentionally struck by a vehicle near Vicksburg. Erik's father found him on the morning of June 26, 1983, in the road near the family's home.


In September, Undersheriff Pali Matyas said detectives learned of an effort to conceal information and deceive detectives and Erik's family about what happened. Matyas has said investigators were giving anyone involved a final chance to come forward.


On Monday, Matyas told the Kalamazoo Gazette that the investigation is ongoing and a witness was interviewed last week.

2 people killed en route to hospital for birth


COMSTOCK TWP. Mich. (WZZM) -- Two people traveling to the hospital to visit for a family birth were killed in a crash Saturday.

Emil Skokan III, 34, and Peggy Nichols, 53, were traveling northbound on South 26th Street at Cork when Skokan lost control of the vehicle and hit a tree, according to a Kalamazoo County Sheriff's Office news release. The crash happened just before 4 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 12.

The two were pronounced dead at the scene.

An investigation found they were en route to the hospital for the birth of a family member.


Raw sewage comes up from opening in manhole


KALAMAZOO, Mich. (AP) -- Officials say solidifying kitchen grease blocked a sewer line in Kalamazoo, causing about 400 gallons of raw sewage to come up through an opening in a manhole.
    
Sue Foune, managing director of the City of Kalamazoo Public Services, tells the Kalamazoo Gazette that the problem was reported Saturday night.
    
Foune says crews removed the blockage that night and vacuumed up sewage from the pavement. State environmental officials and local health officials have been notified.


3 arrested for drugs, gun found in car


KALAMAZOO, Mich. (WZZM)-- The Kalamazoo Public Safety Officers stopped a 1999 Ford Taurus on Woodbury Avenue around 2:45 a.m. Saturday for a traffic violation.

The officers found marijuana inside the car, which prompted two passengers to run, police said. The back seat passenger was caught on Florence Street.

Police found cocaine on the suspect. The front seat passenger was tracked down by a police K-9 unit, hiding behind a home on Florence Street.

Police also found a loaded .40 caliber handgun in the front passenger seat.

One of the 20 year-old suspects faces charges for resisting arrest and possession of cocaine. The other 20-year-old passenger faces charges for resisting arrest, carrying a concealed weapon, and possession of marijuana.

The driver stayed on the scene. They face charges for driving on a suspended license and possessing marijuana.