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News That Affects You Archives for 2018-01

Spectrum Health Big Rapids and Reed City Hospitals implement temporary visitor restrictions in order to curb flu

 

State Health officials say 1 in 15 patients who visited the doctor did for flu symptoms.

 

That’s the highest level since the swine flu pandemic in 2009.

 

Officials at Big Rapids and Reed City Spectrum Health Hospitals says they are trying to limit exposure at their facilities. One step, is implementing  temporary visitor restrictions.

 

Officials ask If you are a visitor and are ill or have been exposed to someone who is ill, please refrain from visiting the hospital.

 

Also the Hospitals strongly recommend only two visitors or family members visit a patient at a time in order to limit exposure to patients, visitors and family members. 

 

These conditions apply to visitors at Big Rapids and Reed City Hospitals, and at all other Spectrum Health hospitals, and are effective until further notice. These measures are designed to protect vulnerable patients.

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Panera Bread issues recall of cream cheese products over listeria concerns

 

Panera Bread is issuing a recall of all of its cream cheese products over Listeria concerns. 

 

The company says the voluntary recall affects all varieties of 2 oz. and 8 oz. cream cheese products sold in its cafes across America.

 

The products have an expiration date on or before 4/2/18. 

 

Panera has not received any report of illnesses regarding these products, the company states in a press release. 

 

Customers are urged to discard the products and contact Panera for a full refund (1-855-6-PANERA.)


 

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Stanwood woman hits tree with car, taken to hospital

 

A 93-year old woman is recovering after getting into a car accident in Mecosta Co.

 

Deputies say it happened Friday, that's when a 93-year old driver from Stanwood was traveling on Carriage Lane near Red Fox in Canadian Lakes when she lost control of her vehicle and struck a tree.

 

Police say the driver could not say what may have caused her to lose control and crash.  

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UPDATE: Mecosta Co. Police locate & identify retail fraud suspect

UPDATE: Mecosta County law enforcement have located and identified a suspect they say is accused of retail fraud at a Big Rapids Menards store on Sunday.

 

Detective Drew Nielsen of the Mecosta County Sheriff's office says along with identifying the suspect they have also recovered the stolen property.  

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Mecosta County Sheriff Deputies are on the lookout for a suspect they say committed retail fraud at the Menards store in Big Rapids.

 

Police say the incident happened Sunday.

 

Anyone with information on the suspect is urged to contact the Sheriff's office.

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Death of Lake Co. woman ruled a homicide

 

The death of a Lake County woman has now been ruled a homicide.

 

Michigan State Police say a medical examiner has concluded 79-year old Evelyn Louise Ware's death was a homicide. On January 10th, emergency crews responded to a house fire in Ellsworth Township. Investigators discovered Ware's remains inside the home following the blaze.

 

Michigan State Police is asking for the public’s help in solving this homicide.

 

Anyone with surveillance systems and/or trail cameras in the area surrounding 1487 Lakola Rd. (Lakola/14 Mile Rd) is asked to contact the MSP Mt. Pleasant Post 989-773- 5951, so they can be reviewed for possible evidence.

 

Anyone wishing to provide information can remain anonymous by contacting the Cadillac Area Silent Observer at 231-779- 9215 or 1-800- 528-8234.

 

Tips can also be submitted through www.P3tips.com. 

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IRS tax scam season ramps up locally; law enforcement offer tips to keep you safe

 

As tax season begins, several local law enforcement agencies are receiving numerous reports of telephone calls from thieves who pretend to be from the IRS.

 

Although these scams take many different forms, the most common scams are phone calls and emails from thieves who use the IRS name, logo or a fake website to try to steal your money. They may try to steal your identity too.
 

Be wary if you get an out-of-the-blue phone call or automated message from someone who claims to be from the IRS. Sometimes they say you owe money and must pay right away. Other times they say you are owed a refund and ask for your bank account information over the phone. Don’t fall for it.


Here are several tips that will help you avoid becoming a scam victim.


The real IRS will NOT:

• Call you to demand immediate payment. The IRS will not call you if you owe taxes without first sending you a bill in the mail.
• Demand tax payment and not allow you to question or appeal the amount you owe.
• Require that you pay your taxes a certain way. For example, demand that you pay with a prepaid debit card.
• Ask for your credit or debit card numbers over the phone.
• Threaten to bring in local police or other agencies to arrest you without paying.
• Threaten you with a lawsuit.

If you don’t owe taxes or have no reason to think that you do:

• Contact the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration. Use TIGTA’s “IRS Impersonation Scam Reporting” web page to report the incident.
• You should also report it to the Federal Trade Commission. Use the “FTC Complaint Assistant” on FTC.gov. Please add “IRS Telephone Scam” to the comments of your report.

If you think you may owe taxes:

• Ask for a call back number and an employee badge number.
• Call the IRS at 800-829-1040. IRS employees can help you.

Email Scams:

In most cases, an IRS phishing scam is an unsolicited, bogus email that claims to come from the IRS. These scams often use fake refunds, phony tax bills, or threats of an audit. Many scammers even use what appears to be an official IRS logo at the top of their email. Some emails link to sham websites that look real. Don’t be fooled! The scammers’ goal is to lure victims to give up their personal and financial information. If they get what they’re after, they use it to steal a victim’s money and their identity.

If you get a ‘phishing’ email, the IRS offers this advice:

• Don’t reply to the message.
• Don’t give out your personal or financial information.
• Forward the email to phishing@irs .gov. Then delete it.

Don’t open any attachments or click on any links. They may have malicious code that will infect your computer.


 

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Big Rapids man suffers injuries following car accident

 

A Big Rapids man is recovering following a car accident in Green Township this morning. 

 

Deputies say it happened on 195th Avenue just south of 20 Mile Rd. 

 

A 37-year old Big Rapids man was heading northbound on 195th when he drifted off the road, went through a fence and hit a tree. 

 

He was taken to a local hospital for non-life threatening injuries. 

 

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Police identify victim of Lake Co. house fire

 

Michigan State Police have confirmed human remains discovered by investigators following a house fire last week in Lake County are that of the homeowner.

 

The fire occurred at a residence on Lakeola Rd in Ellsworth Township Wednesday.

 

Troopers say an autopsy confirmed the remains were that of 79-year old Evelyn Louise Ware.

 

The cause of the fire is still be investigated. 

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Two arrested for delivering heroin in Mecosta Co.

 

More drugs have been taken off the streets in Mecosta County as two people are behind bars for their alleged involvement in heroin delivery.

 

38-year old Corey James Smith of Lansing and 43-year old Tammy Eileen Friend of Alma, were arraigned on one count each of delivery of heroin.

 

The charge stems from an investigation by the Central Michigan Enforcement Team over alleged incidents in Wheatland Township.

 

Bond for Smith is set at $125,000, while bond for Friend is set at $150,000.

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Spectrum Health Big Rapids Hospital welcomes first baby of 2018

 

Spectrum Health Big Rapids Hospital welcome its first baby of 2018 last night.

 

Genesis Faith Stowers, the daughter of Roxanne and Jonathan Stowers, was born weighing 7 pounds, 9 ounces.

 

The Stowers family, of Howard City, received a special basket from the Spectrum Health Big Rapids Hospital Auxiliary for having the first baby of the New Year.

 

The basket contains a baby sleeper, diapers and a plethora of other pink items for

their new baby girl.

 

The couple posed for a photo with Alexandrea Melonokas-Mahar, MD, who will be the baby’s pediatrician at Spectrum Health Big Rapids Family Medicine.

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Two Big Rapids men plead guilty to sex crime charge

 

Two Big Rapids men accused of sexual assault will be sentenced following plea deals with Mecosta Co. prosecutors.

 

20-year old Christopher Charles Collins and 19-year old Gavin Christian Mason pleaded guilty to a charge of third degree criminal sexual conduct, in exchange prosecutors dismissed one count of first degree CSC.

 

Collins and Mason were arrested back in August following an incident at the Parkview Apartments.

 

They face up to 15 years behind bars, if they are handed the maximum sentence. 

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