devil's night

Opinion
10:57 am
Thu October 31, 2013

The trick's on Detroit

Lessenberry commentary for 10/31/13

Well, it’s Halloween, and once upon a time the worst that could happen is that kids would rub soap, or occasionally wax, into the windows of your car. Plus the risk that you would get sick from eating too much candy. But we live in a different age, and for Detroit, this is just one more day of horrors in a long series of nightmares.

The city is attempting to file for bankruptcy, and there is a real threat that the courts will make Detroit sell off the assets of the Detroit Institute of Arts to pay some of the creditors.

Detroit desperately needs a turnaround, and a lucky break, and unfortunately, seems doomed over and over to embarrassment. The most recent example is the idea that someone would pay millions of dollars for the destroyed and crumbling old Packard auto plant. True, it is a part of Detroit history. My late father-in-law worked there as a young engineer, and helped close it down when Packard dissolved.

But that was in 1958. The plant long ago became an eyesore. Fifteen years ago, it was a popular site for drug-induced “rave” parties. Today, it is a ghastly and unsalvagable ruin.

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Politics & Government
10:56 am
Thu October 31, 2013

How Detroit kicked "Devil's Night" to the curb

Back in the 90's, Devil's Night saw some 800 buildings blazing across the city
Photo courtesy of the Project's facebook page

Hundreds of volunteers patrolled the streets of Detroit last night and will do so again tonight.

With flashing lights on their car roofs and maps pointing out abandoned buildings, they drove slowly, looking for arsonists.

Halloween in Detroit used to mean lots of fires: some 800 buildings blazed in the mid 1990's, when Devil's Night was at its peak. 

The city became infamous for these arson sprees, with reporters flying in from as far away as Japan and Australia to cover the chaos. 

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Crime
4:09 pm
Fri October 28, 2011

Trying to discourage arson this Halloween weekend in Flint and Detroit

Flint firefighters at work
(photo by Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio)

Officials in Detroit and Flint will turn to volunteers this weekend to help discourage Halloween-related arson fires.   

Dozens of volunteers are expected to patrol their neighborhoods and man police mini-stations during the weekend.   

Tanya Meeks is the Flint Police Department’s community liaison officer.  She says having extra eyes on the street help.    

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Politics
6:00 pm
Tue October 25, 2011

Detroit gears up for annual Angels' Night campaign

Detroit officials are finalizing plans for the city’s annual Angels' Night campaign.

That’s an effort to put a damper on the arson sprees that once characterized the  “Devils' Night” period around Halloween.

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Halloween & Arson
3:07 pm
Thu October 28, 2010

Flint preps for Devils Night

An abandoned home in Flint burns
(photo by Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio)

Flint city leaders are working with neighborhood watch groups and others to prevent an outbreak of arson fires this weekend. 

Flint firefighters have battled dozens of suspicious fires in abandoned homes for months.

 City leaders are concerned arsonists may step up their activity this Halloween weekend.

 Police officer Tanya Meeks is the liaison officer between the Flint police department and local volunteer groups.

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