SAULT STE. MARIE, MI--   The U.S. Coast Guard continues ice-breaking activities this week, in anticipation of the opening of the Soo Locks on Saturday. 

Wednesday morning a cutter will conduct spring breakout operations on the St. Mary’s River near Pipe and Drummond Islands.  It will open the Pipe Island Passage and circumnavigate Drummond Island along the International Boundary Line into the North Channel.

MARQUETTE, MI--   The Michigan Department of Natural Resources is seeking private landowners to help maintain and improve deer wintering habitat in U.P. counties. 

Officials say habitat quality is an influence in white-tailed deer population trends. 

Three meetings will be held to discuss cost-share programs available to aid in those improvement efforts. Each will be held from 6 to 8 p.m.

DEARBORN, MI (AP)--   AAA Michigan says gas prices statewide have risen by about 1 cent per gallon in the past week. 

The Dearborn-based auto club says early Monday the average price for self-serve regular unleaded gasoline was about $2.36 per gallon. That's about 33 cents more than it was at the same point last year.

AAA says the lowest average price was about $2.35 per gallon in the Detroit area. The highest average was about $2.38 in the Lansing area.

AAA Michigan surveys daily fuel prices at 2,800 gas stations across the state. 

BEAVER ISLAND, MI--   Two people had to be medically evacuated off of Beaver Island following a single-vehicle accident on Friday. 

Coast Guard Sector Sault Ste. Marie received the medevac request Friday evening, but due to poor visibility and icing an aircrew from Traverse City was forced to delay its trip until Saturday morning.

A helicopter picked up the two patients and brought them back to Traverse City, where they were taken to Munson Medical Center for treatment.  

MARQUETTE, MI--   An Ishpeming man retried for torturing two women at his mixed martial arts studio has been found not guilty on all charges. 

The Michigan Court of Appeals granted Jason Sadowski, 47, a new trial after his co-defendant made comments that implicated him at the first trial, but Sadowski couldn’t challenge the statements because the co-defendant didn’t testify.

Sadowski was exonerated Friday on seven charges, including torture, solicitation of murder, unlawful imprisonment, and assault with intent to do great bodily harm less than murder.

ATLANTIC MINE, MI--   A Houghton County man has been arrested on drug charges, following a five-month investigation.

The Upper Peninsula Substance Enforcement Team apprehended the 28-year-old Atlantic Mine man Friday for delivery of methamphetamine, delivery of heroin, and delivery of Dilaudid. 

The suspect remains lodged in the Houghton County jail. Additional charges are expected.  

CRYSTAL FALLS TOWNSHIP, MI--   The Iron County Sheriff’s Office has released additional information regarding a shooting in Crystal Falls Township that injured a horse.

On Thursday afternoon Iron County Central Dispatch received a call there had been a shooting and a horse had been shot. Another call indicated two bullets had entered a home near the incident.

GWINN, MI--   The Department of Natural Resources has closed a footbridge leading to Black River Falls in the Gwinn Forest Management Unit. 

The wooden bridge crosses a small, deep gorge in the rocks that channels water from the river during flooding. Officials say severe deterioration has created an unsafe condition. Decking planks are missing and the railings are weak and worn.

The bridge will be removed in the upcoming field season and that segment of the trail permanently closed.

An alternate route to the falls will be improved this spring or summer.  

SAULT STE. MARIE, MI--   Coast Guard Sector Sault Ste. Marie is warning residents about unstable ice on waterways.

With forecast rain, wind, and above-freezing temperatures this weekend, officials are urging people to use extreme caution when on the ice across Lake Superior, the St. Mary’s River, and the northern parts of Lakes Michigan and Huron. 

The Coast Guard is also increasing ice-breaking operations on the St. Mary’s River in preparation for the opening of the Soo Locks March 25, which will further destabilize the ice.

LANSING, MI (AP)--   AARP Michigan is coming out against a Republican health care bill that the advocacy group worries would weaken Medicare's fiscal sustainability and make insurance more expensive for seniors age 50 to 64. 

The organization also said Thursday that many lower-income seniors who qualify for Medicaid could be affected by the legislation under consideration in Congress.

The AARP organized a news conference in Lansing at which seniors expressed their concerns.