State Briefs

Whitehall's police chief said a plane hit a water tower and crashed east of the northern Muskegon County city after leaving the Fremont airport about 45 minutes earlier on Monday. The pilot died in the crash.

80-year-old pilot dies after plane hits water tower

WHITEHALL (AP) — A small plane crashed into a water tower near school athletic fields in northern Muskegon County, killing the 80-year-old pilot.

The National Transportation Safety Board said it will investigate the crash, which occurred Monday in Whitehall.

The Taylorcraft BC-12 plane had departed from an airport in Fremont about 45 minutes before the crash. Whitehall Police Chief Roger Squiers said there didn’t appear to be any engine problems.

The water tower is in a populated area. Squiers said the potential for injuries on the ground was “very real” if the plane had avoided the tower and crashed nearby.

Man rejects deal, chooses trial in slaying, dismemberment

GRAND RAPIDS (AP) — A Grand Rapids man accused of killing a woman and dismembering her body has rejected a plea deal that offered an opportunity for parole after 31 years in prison.

Jared Chance, 30, told a judge Monday that he wants to go to trial in the death of 31-year-old Ashley Young, a former Grand Haven resident who was last living in Kalamazoo.

If convicted of first-degree murder, Chance would go to prison for life.

A jury was selected in the Kent County court, and opening statements are set for today.

Young’s torso was found in December 2018 in the basement of Chance’s Grand Rapids rental home. Other remains haven’t been found.

Police quote Chance as telling a neighbor that he knew how to commit murder and “get away with it.”

Separately, Chance’s parents are charged with perjury and accessories after the fact.

2 workers killed when granite slabs shift on top of them

STERLING HEIGHTS (AP) — A fire chief says two workers have been killed after granite slabs shifted on top of them inside a Detroit-area business.

Sterling Heights Fire Chief Chris Martin told WDIV-TV the incident occurred Monday afternoon at a business called the Stone Warehouse. Martin said the slabs weigh about 1,000 pounds each and measure 5 feet wide and 8 feet long. He didn’t say how many slabs were on the men.

Firefighters evacuated the business while they worked to remove the slabs from on top of the men.

Martin said the circumstances that led to the slabs shifting are unclear.

The men’s names weren’t immediately released.

Detroit teen hurt after gun he was playing with discharges

DETROIT (AP) — Authorities say a 13-year-old boy was hurt when a gun he and his 3-year-old brother were playing with discharged in basement of a Detroit home.

Police said the teen was shot in the back and the bullet exited through his stomach.

Investigators are looking into who fired the gun, who owns it and how the children got their hands on it.

The teen was taken to the hospital after the shooting Saturday night and was listed in stable condition.

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