Traverse City Record-Eagle

January 15, 2013

State in Brief: 01/15/2013

FROM WIRE REPORTS
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---- — Wolf protection group seeks to overturn hunt

LANSING — A group opposed to killing wolves says it will circulate petitions to force a referendum on a new Michigan law allowing hunting of the once-protected predators.

Organizers of the group Keep Michigan Wolves Protected said Monday that it will seek to gather 225,000 signatures by late march to qualify for the November 2014 ballot.

The coalition includes animal welfare, conservation and Native American groups.

The Legislature last month voted to classify gray wolves as a game species, and state officials are preparing hunting rules. Michigan has about 700 wolves.

Man tied to Mafia: Hoffa body near Detroit

DETROIT — A man convicted of crimes as a reputed Mafia captain is claiming missing Teamsters boss Jimmy Hoffa was buried in suburban Detroit.

Tony Zerilli was in prison when Hoffa disappeared from a Detroit-area restaurant in 1975, but tells New York TV station WNBC he was informed about Hoffa's whereabouts after his release. The ailing 85-year-old took a reporter to a field near Rochester, north of Detroit, but no exact location was disclosed. The report was also aired on Detroit's WDIV.

"The master plan was ... they were going to put him in a shallow grave here," Zerilli said. "Then, they were going to take him from here to Rogers City upstate. There was a hunting lodge and they were going to bury in a shallow grave, then take him up there for final burial. Then, I understand, that it just fell through."

Zerilli did not say during the aired interview why he chose to make his claims now. WNBC reported he is promoting an upcoming book titled "Hoffa Found," the website for which promises to reveal details about Hoffa's death.

Prisoner attacked, killed at U.P. prison

MARESNISCO TOWNSHIP — State police say a prisoner at the Ojibway Correctional Facility in the western Upper Peninsula was attacked and killed.

Detective Sgt. Russell Larson at the Wakefield post said Monday that troopers got a call about an assault on an inmate Friday.

Larson says the inmate died at a hospital the next day.

The detective says state police are withholding the names of those involved in the attack while they investigate.

The prison is in Gogebic County's Marenisco Township, about 20 miles east-southeast of Ironwood.