The Weekly Newspaper serving the citizens of Morenci, Mich., Fayette, Ohio, and surrounding areas.

  • Front.cheers
    MACEE BEERS joins other Fayette Elementary School students for the annual Mini-Cheer performance during the half-time break at the basketball game.
  • Family.3.wide
    CHILDREN at Stair District Library’s Family Story Time toss scarves into the air during an activity. The evening program provided a mix of stories, songs, dancing, crafts and snacks Monday evening. The program is offered at 5:30 p.m. every Monday for five more weeks. The program is designed for three to five year olds and their family.
  • Front.newpaper.2
    THE INTERVIEW—Evelyn Joughin (right) records the interaction with an iPad while Jack Varga, next to her, asks questions of Morenci Elementary School principal Gail Frey. Morenci senior Sam Cool (standing) listens. Cool serves as the editor for the newspaper written by members of Mrs. Barrett’s second grade class.
  • Front.code.2
    WRITING CODE—Brock Christle (left), a Morenci fifth grade student, takes a look at the progress being made by fourth grader Anthony Lewis. Libby Rorick, a sixth grade student, is next in a line of girls trying out the coding tutorials. This year marked Morenci’s second year of participation in the Hour of Code project.
  • Front.gym.new
    REMIE RYAN (left) tries to dodge the foam wand held by Hayden Bays during physical education class at Morenci Elementary School. In the background, Lauryn Dominique and Brooklyn Williams stay clear of the tag. Second grade students were working on cardiovascular health on the first day back from vacation. For the record, Safety Tag is a very difficult sport to photograph.
  • Front.lift
    MORENCI student Dalton McCowan puts everything into a dead lift attempt Saturday morning during the Wyseguy Push/Pull event. Lifters helped raise more than $1,600 for the family of the late Devin Wyse, a former Morenci power-lifter who graduated last year. Commemorative T-shirts are still available by contacting teacher Dan Hoffman.
  • Front.library.books
    MACK DICKSON takes a book off the “blind date” cart at the Fayette library. Patrons can choose a book without knowing what’s inside other than a general category. The books are among those designated for removal so patrons can consider them gifts. In Morenci, new books and staff favorites were chosen from the stacks and must be returned. Patrons get a piece of chocolate, too, to take on their date, but no clue about their “date.” One reader said she really enjoyed her book for a few pages, but then lost interest—so typical for a blind date.

John Skelton waives hearing 2010.12.29

Written by David Green.

A Morenci man charged with parental kidnapping waived his right to a hearing in district court and will now be arraigned in Lenawee County Circuit Court Jan. 5.

John Skelton, charged with three counts of parental kidnapping following the disappearance of his three sons last month, was previously arraigned in district court and was scheduled for a preliminary examination yesterday (Tuesday). The hearing was to determine if prosecutors had probable cause to charge him with the crime.

Skelton informed the judge Monday that he would waive the hearing and that moves the process to circuit court for arraignment.

If Skelton pleads not guilty, explained Morenci Chief of Police Larry Weeks, a trial date will be set. If he pleads guilty, a sentencing date will be declared.

Skelton is charged with keeping his children more than 24 hours—the time frame listed under the parental kidnapping law—with the intent of concealing them from their mother.

The three Skelton children—Andrew, Alexander and Tanner—have not been seen since they were at the Skelton home with their father Thanksgiving Day. Skelton claims he gave the children to someone from an organization, but he’s offered no additional information about his story.

LAWSUIT—The Adrian Daily Telegram reports that television station WDIV from Detroit has filed a lawsuit to force authorities to release search warrant documents relating to the Skelton house.

A lawyer for the television station says a search warrant and tabulation sheets listing items seized in the search should be made public immediately “due to the newsworthy value of the information sought.”

Chief Weeks explained that search warrant documents are generally filed with the court and open to the public.

“However, in sensitive cases,” he said, “the officer requesting the search warrant can file a document with the issuing judge requesting the search warrant and the tabulations be suppressed from public view.”

The Telegram states that Lenawee County District Court Judge James Sheridan responded in a letter that the court is not in a position to verify whether or not a search warrant was issued. Affidavits for search warrants must be non-public for 56 days in order to protect criminal investigations, Sheridan wrote.

WDIV’s attorney claims that no suppression order was filed with the Michigan Supreme Court, as required.

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