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Pets of the Week 06-21-16

This week's pets are Daisy and Lexi.

Cold Case Murder In Alcona County, Prime Suspect Found

The Alcona County Sheriff's Office and Michigan State Police have made significant progress in a cold case homicide.

According to Crime Stoppers, they've found a suspect in a murder that took place 16 years ago.

In March of 2000 the body of 39-year-old Patricia Lenee Leeper was found in an Alcona County ditch near Curran, Michigan.

She was a resident of Flint, Michigan at the time which is approximately 150 miles south of where her body was found.

It was determined that she was a victim of a homicide.

She was known to be involved in prostitution and suffered from drug addiction.

Since the finding of Leeper's body, the Alcona county sheriff's office and MSP have continued to investigate her death in the hope of identifying her killer.

DNA evidence associated with the crime scene and the unknown killer was collected and added to the Combined DNA Index System.

Over the past 16 years since the homicide, investigators developed several persons of interest and submitted their DNA for comparison on this case.

However none of those persons were a match for the DNA profile of the unknown killer.

But in April of this year, investigators were notified that an association had now been made with a subject whose DNA was recently submitted on a felony arrest and conviction.

It was confirmed that he was a match for the unknown male DNA from the crime scene and victim.

This person has now become the focus of the investigation and is the prime suspect in the death of Leeper.

Authorities are reluctant to release the name, but they did state he is described as being a light–skinned bi–racial male, now 40-years-old.

It's known he has ties to both Flint and Curran and he is currently incarcerated on unrelated charges.

APS Conducts Follow-Up Study On 2015 CTE Program Grads

Alpena Public Schools conducted a follow up study of students who completed the Career and Technical Education program at Alpena High School and graduated a year ago.

The follow–up study is a requirement by the board of education and focuses on the 38 students from last year who completed the entire 12-segment CTE program. CTE instructor Zach Grulke conducted the survey and was able to contact all 38 completers of the program.

The results are as follows:

24 students or 63% of the completers have received a state license in their program of study.

33 students or 86% of completers are going to college and are pursuing a program matching what they studied in CTE.

Of those students attending post–secondary education, 28 of them are using their CTE training currently in their schoolwork.

7% said they are only enrolled in general education courses.

Of the completers who entered the workforce after graduation, 90% said they enjoyed their work and 75% said they are using their CTE training at their current jobs.

CTE Director Joyce McCoy said the results are very good, but the program has some goals to strive for as it continues to grow. "The completers are just the ones who have completed all 12 segments, if you were on the curriculum meeting last week, they talked about how important having completers in CTE are, because those are the ones that draw on most of the funding that comes to Alpena," says McCoy.

For next year, a large focus will be put on getting more students enrolled and completing the program, as well as having programs that will lead to getting a state license in that field, post graduation.

2016 Thunder Bay Maritime Festival Is Approaching

The Fourth of July is a big day for Downtown Alpena, with various events taking place throughout the day.

But perhaps the largest event is the Thunder Bay Maritime Festival.

For the 16th consecutive year the National Marine Sanctuary will be hosting the festival.

The annual Fourth of July event brings in nearly 10,000 visitors to Alpena each year, and plenty of downtown businesses benefit from the tourism.

The event lineup this year includes the Thunder Bay Cardboard Boat Regatta, which is considered to be the highlight of the day...and the helicopter tours of Downtown Alpena are returning for their 2nd year.

For Media Coordinator Stephanie Gandulla, events such as the Maritime Festival help make Alpena a true tourist destination.

"Alpena is really proud of their heritage, and really proud of all the things there is to do here in the summertime and in the wintertime,” Gandulla said. “So, I think that the maritime festival, along with all the other things that happen on the Fourth of July here in Alpena; have really made the area a destination."

The festival is free to the public, and begins Sunday night with beer tasting on the roof deck, before continuing on Monday morning with live music and other events.

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