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.

Skelton hearing quickly adjourned 2011.02.16

Written by David Green.

skelton.2.16By DAVID GREEN

John Skelton was back in circuit court last week, but only for a couple of minutes before the session was adjourned.

Skelton, 39, of Morenci, was ordered to appear in Lenawee County Circuit Court Feb. 9 for a hearing in connection with three counts of parental kidnapping after his three sons disappeared on Thanksgiving.

Skelton claims that Andrew, 9, Alexander, 7, and Tanner, 5, are with an organization that he refuses to name.

Although Skelton appeared in court Jan. 28 regarding a custody charge, this was his first appearance in the criminal kidnapping case. He waived a preliminary examination on Dec. 26 and filed a waiver of arraignment in January.

An adjournment was requested last Wednesday morning by Skelton’s public defender, John Glaser, and Lenawee County Prosecutor Jonathan Poer agreed with the request. No reason for delay was given.

Skelton was ordered back in court Feb. 23. A trial date might be set at that time or another adjournment could be requested.

Divorce

Skelton is to return to circuit court March 18 as he continues to face contempt of court charges for failing to return his boys to their mother, Tanya, as specified in a visitation agreement. The couple is seeking a divorce.

In court Jan. 28, Judge Margaret Noe noted that she signed an order in late November to give Tanya Skelton exclusive parenting time.

“I would ask at this time, Mr. Skelton, if you are prepared to turn the children over to their mother pursuant to my order of Nov. 29,” she said.

After a brief conversation with his attorney, Skelton said, “I can’t.”

Judge Noe said the custody case is further complicated by the criminal kidnapping proceeding. She announced that she will suspend and postpone further action in the contempt case while the criminal matter is monitored.

Glaser stated that he didn’t realize he was to represent Skelton in the divorce issue and he preferred to represent him only in the contempt case.

After that, the judge asked questions directly to Skelton. Skelton said that he and his wife already split the property.

Addressing Tanya Skelton’s attorney, David McFarland, the judge asked, “Do you agree that all personal property and real estate is resolved and not an issue?”

It’s still an issue that needs to be resolved at a later date, McFarland answered.

A review and pretrial hearing was scheduled at 8:15 a.m. March 18 to continue to monitor progress on the criminal matter and its effect, if any, on the civil proceeding. Skelton will then represent himself without an attorney.

Skelton questioned details of the form he was asked to sign, stating that he did not want to pay his wife’s legal fees and alimony.

“Mr. McFarland, is your client asking for spousal support?” the judge asked.

“Your honor, there are more important issues to discuss at this trial,” he answered.

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