News@noon: Wings' playoff hopes, new Flint action plan
Today is Monday, March 21, 2016, and we want to know: Are the Red Wings headed for a 25th straight playoff appearance? That's just one of many stories on our plate as we start the work week. Here we go:
New Flint action plan
Obama in Cuba
- President Barack Obama and Cuban President Raul Castro shook hands and smiled for the cameras today at the Revolutionary Palace in Havana. It was the leaders' first meeting since Obama arrived in Cuba on Sunday.
Refugees in Michigan
- The state is expected to take in more than 5,000 refugees this year, the highest number since 2002. The news comes amid concerns about security and congressional efforts to overhaul the U.S. Resettlement Program.
- Detroit Police Chief James Craig and others in the department are "livid" that a teen received a bond last week of $30,000, 10 percent, after allegedly firing a gunshot at police during a foot chase. The bond allows him to be freed if he posts $3,000, which is less than required recently from alleged graffiti violators.
- Two people were arrested late last night after a gas station shooting early Sunday on the city's west side. Police publicly released remarkably clear surveillance footage of the attack in an appeal to the public to help identify the female shooter.
- Meanwhile, a woman was hospitalized early Monday after she was sexually assaulted, robbed and carjacked on the city's east side. Police are on the lookout for the woman's 2002 Chevrolet Malibu and a suspect described as a man with a light complexion, Afro and goatee.
...and Detroit schools
- The city's Education Achievement Authority schools face an uncertain future after Eastern Michigan University opted to pull its support for the struggling district. The partnership is scheduled to end June 30, 2017. At the same time, traditional Detroit Public Schools also are struggling with dwindling enrollment, teacher unrest and a looming financial meltdown.
- All Detroit Public Schools buildings remained open today despite threats of more sickouts. Equal Opportunity Now/By Any Means Necessary had pledged that Bow and Mason elementary schools would be closed.
- So, will the Red Wings make the playoffs? They're scrambling for the opportunity to extend their 24-year post-season streak, Gregg Krupa said in his latest column. The team is three points ahead of the Philadelphia Flyers in the hunt for the last playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, but Philly has two games at hand.
The lighter side
- 'Zootopia' trampled its competition during its third weekend in theaters. The animated Disney flick featuring the voices of Jason Bateman and Ginnifer Goodwin earned $38 million, according to comScore estimates. That puts the film at $201.8 million total domestically.
- Dequindre Road offers "adventures in ethnic food," as chronicled by Detroit News staffers Charlotte Massey and Robin Buckson. In the first of a six-part series, take a "trip around the world" along the north-south street separating Oakland and Macomb counties, spotting restaurants offering up "a feast of international flavors," including (but not limited to) Chinese, Arabic, Vietnamese and Punjabi cuisines.