Saturday, June 19: Latest developments on coronavirus in Michigan

211 new coronavirus cases reported

Michigan health officials on Friday announced 211 new confirmed cases of COVID-19, bringing the state’s total to 60,829 cases.

This is the third consecutive day the state has reported more than 200 new cases. New confirmed cases had remained below 200 from June 12 until Wednesday.

Five more people have died from the virus, pushing the state’s total COVID-19 death toll to 5,823 people. Kent County reported four of those deaths and Gratiot County reported one of those deaths. The statewide fatality rate for COVID-19 is about 10%.

File pboto, June 10, 2020, by Joe Hermitt |

Michigan gyms may reopen

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer lost a court battle Friday when a U.S. District judge struck down Whitmer’s executive order banning gyms and fitness centers as unconstitutional.

The judge said the ban may remain in place until June 25, at which time, absent of an appeal or stay, the businesses may reopen.

“With this ruling, the court is playing a dangerous role it should not play: second-guessing and upending the data-informed decisions that have saved thousands of lives in Michigan,” Whitmer’s spokeswoman, Tiffany Brown, said. “The idea that gyms – with their high levels of heavy respiratory activity, shared indoor spaces, and shared surfaces – might be one of the later businesses to come back online in the midst of this global pandemic is hardly surprising and highly sensible.”

MLive photographer hit with rubber bullets at Detroit protest

MLive photographer Nicole Hester was hit by rubber bullets fire by Detroit police during the Saturday, May 31, 2020 protest in the city. (Nicole Hester,

Detroit police officer suspended over injury to MLive photog

The Detroit Police Department suspended an officer accused of shooting non-lethal ammunition at and injuring an MLive photographer and two other photographers covering police brutality protests in downtown Detroit.

The officer was suspended with pay June 10, while the department’s Professional Standards Division investigates the incident which occurred at about midnight, May 31, near Kennedy Square, Detroit Police Department Sgt. Nicole Kirkwood said.

MLive photojournalist Nicole Hester was hit by as many as a dozen pellets in her face and body, leaving welts and narrowly missing an eye.

Michigan State Police talk with a festival attendee inside Sherwood Forest during the first day of the Electric Forest Music Festival onThursday, June 27, 2019 at the Double JJ Resort in Rothbury, Michigan. Joel Bissell | MLive.comJoel Bissell |

Electric Forest Cancelled

ROTHBURY, MI – The host of the popular Electric Forest camping and music festival, canceled this year due to coronavirus, has announced plans for a knockoff event called “Sherwood Forest.”

With the cancellation of Electric Forest, Double JJ has announced it will hold its own “Sherwood Forest Appreciation Weekend” on June 26-28, the same weekend as Electric Forest would have been.

Organizers of Electric Forest distanced themselves from “Sherwood Forest” in a post on Twitter: “Heads up, Forest Family – this event is not hosted by or affiliated with Electric Forest festival or Forest HQ,”

Operation Haircut on Capitol lawn in Lansing - May 20, 2020

Karl Manke, the Owosso-based barber who opened his barbershop despite the stay-at-home executive order, cuts a man’s hair during “Operation Haircut” on the lawn of the Michigan Capitol in Lansing, on Wednesday, May 20, 2020. (Mike Mulholland | Mulholland |

Michigan drops lawsuit against rogue barber

The state has agreed to dismiss a lawsuit it filed against Karl Manke, the 77-year old Owosso barber who has been locked in a legal battle over attempts to shut down his shop because of the coronavirus pandemic, his attorney says.

David A. Kallman, Manke’s attorney, said in a news release that the Department of Attorney General agreed to a full and final dismissal of the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services’ lawsuit against Manke, a suit that also sought an injunction against him to force the closure of his shop.

The Michigan Supreme Court recently vacated a Court of Appeals ruling that had granted the injunction.


City Hall in Kalamazoo, Michigan on Wednesday, May 6, 2020.Joel Bissell

Kalamzoo ‘low risk’ for coronavirus

Kalamazoo County has now moved into the “low risk” category for COVID-19, according to state data.

State data reports that 222 tests were administered and the positivity rate among patients was only 1.9% during the seven-day period ending June 16, according to a dashboard created by the University of Michigan and state officials.

The low risk category is defined as having a positive test threshold of 3% or less.

Central Michigan University

Central Michigan University sign. Kaytie Boomer | MLive.comKaytie Boomer |

CMU commencement postponed, again

Coronavirus concerns are again postponing commencement for spring Central Michigan University graduates.

Recent graduates were originally scheduled to walk across the stage for graduation on May 9. Once CMU went online-only for the rest of the semester, that date was changed to Aug. 15. On Friday, June 19, CMU announced the rescheduled date in August has been postponed.

Commencement updates will be posted on CMU’s website, and students can also fill out a commencement notification form to receive updates.


In addition to washing hands regularly and not touching your face, officials recommend practicing social distancing, assuming anyone may be carrying the virus.

Health officials say you should be staying at least 6 feet away from others and working from home, if possible.

Use disinfecting wipes or disinfecting spray cleaners on frequently-touched surfaces in your home (door handles, faucets, countertops) and carry hand sanitizer with you when you go into places like stores.

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has also issued an executive order requiring people to wear face coverings over their mouth and nose while inside enclosed, public spaces.

Additional information is available at and

Read more on MLive:

Michigan gyms to reopen

Mask rule places retailers in ‘no-win’ situation

Who’s wearing masks, results from 37 Michigan stores

Coronavirus in Michigan: Maps, charts and the latest reports

Whitmer to extend Michigan’s state of emergency

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