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This Hour: Latest Michigan news, sports, business and entertainment

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Porch shooter back in court as trial resumes

DETROIT (AP) - The trial of a Detroit-area man who killed a young unarmed woman on his porch has resumed.

Theodore Wafer has returned Monday to Wayne County court. He's charged with second-degree murder in the death of 19-year-old Renisha McBride, who was shot outside Wafer's Dearborn Heights home last fall.

The 55-year-old says he shot McBride in self-defense.

But prosecutors played a recording last week of Wafer's first encounter with police during which he said he didn't know his shotgun was loaded.

It's not known why McBride ended up at Wafer's home at 4:30 a.m. on Nov. 2. They didn't know each other. She was drunk and had crashed her car a half-mile away 3 ½ hours earlier.


Report for Detroit creditor boosts value of art

DETROIT (AP) - One of the companies challenging Detroit's bankruptcy plan says the possible value of the Detroit Institute of Arts' collection is $8.5 billion - a figure that's higher than previous estimates.

The company also says the city owns or controls as much as $1.2 billion in real estate, including vacant property and homes that could be foreclosed upon.

The Detroit News and Detroit Free Press report an art consultant for Financial Guaranty Insurance estimated the DIA collection is worth almost double a previous estimate.

New York-based Artvest Partners LLC said earlier this month that art eyed for sale by some creditors could be worth more than $4.6 billion, but likely would fetch a quarter of that or less in a forced liquidation.

A trial over Detroit's bankruptcy plan starts Aug. 14.


Possible land deal for US-Canada bridge delayed

DETROIT (AP) - A proposal has been delayed to transfer 301 Detroit-owned properties to the Michigan Land Bank in exchange for $1.4 million from the Canadian government as part of plans for a $2 billion international commuter bridge.

A special Detroit City Council session was scheduled Monday morning. The Detroit Free Press reports, however, that Detroit's state-appointed emergency manager Kevyn Orr's office has agreed to delay consideration of such an agreement until September.

Gov. Rick Snyder and Canada have agreed to build the New International Trade Crossing over the Detroit River between Detroit and Windsor, Ontario. The bridge's Detroit footprint would be on the city's southwest side. Officials say they hope to open the bridge in 2020.

The project is opposed by the owner of the existing Ambassador Bridge.


Projects in 5 counties fight blight, boost housing

LANSING, Mich. (AP) - The state says projects in five Michigan counties are getting a share of more than $2.5 million to help fight blight and create senior housing.

The work is planned for Berrien, Calhoun, Genesee, Ingham and Kalamazoo counties. The state announced funding last week.

Genesee County is getting more than $396,000 for the demolition of 34 single-family homes; Calhoun County is getting nearly $265,000 for the demolition of 24 homes; and Ingham County is getting more than $155,000 for the demolition of eight homes.

Berrien County is getting $119,000 for the demolition of 12 homes. Meanwhile, the Kalamazoo area is getting more than $181,000 for the demolition of 19 homes and more than $1.4 million to create 10 units of senior housing at the Prairie Gardens development.


Northern Michigan lawmaker's mom supports opponent

TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (AP) - State Rep. Wayne Schmidt has picked up support from an unlikely source in a closely watched battle for an open Senate seat in northern Michigan: his opponent's mom.

Schmidt, of Traverse City, will face fellow Republican Rep. Greg MacMaster in the 37th District's Aug. 5 primary. MacMaster's mother Michele tells the Traverse City Record-Eagle Schmidt is "the better candidate," citing his background and community activities.

Greg MacMaster, of Kewadin, says he hasn't spoken to his mom in 21 years and says she left him to live with his alcoholic father as a boy. Once his dad died, he later lived with his mother and stepfather.

Greg MacMaster says it's "unfortunate some people choose to take politics to a personal level." Michele MacMaster declined to discuss her relationship with her son.


Construction begins on Detroit light rail project

DETROIT (AP) - Construction is starting on a long-awaited commuter light rail project linking downtown Detroit to the city's New Center area.

Woodward Avenue from Adams Street south to Campus Martius will be closed for about 120 days for M-1 Rail work. The roadway was shut down Monday.

Crews will remove concrete, install rail tracks, perform drainage work, and do repaving and utility relocation. Work typically will be done between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Mondays through Fridays. Sidewalks will remain open.

The 3.3 mile, $140-million streetcar project is scheduled for completion in late 2016. It will have 16 curbside and four median passenger stations. It is expected to spur economic and job growth along the Woodward Corridor.

The federal government has committed $25 million. Other funding comes from foundations and businesses.


Fireworks association plans 2016 Michigan event

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) - The National Fireworks Association plans to hold its annual convention in Grand Rapids in 2016.

WOOD-TV reports Experience Grand Rapids, the official destination marketing organization for Kent County, announced the booking on Monday.

The convention is expected to bring more than 1,000 attendees. It's scheduled for Sept. 6-11, 2016, at DeVos Place Convention Center.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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