Michael Levenson, The Boston Globe

Michael Levenson

The Boston Globe

Houston, TX, United States

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Recent articles by Michael:

She was told surgery would cost about $1,300. Then the bill came: $229,000.

This past week, after a years-long legal battle, the Colorado Supreme Court ruled that Lisa Melody French did not have to pay the nearly $230,000 for the spinal-fusion surgery she underwent at St. Anthony North Hospital in Westminster in 2014. → Read More

Goodwill sold a bust for $34.99. It’s an ancient Roman relic.

Laura Young was browsing through a Goodwill store in Austin, Texas, in 2018 when she found a bust for sale. It was resting on the floor, under a table, and had a yellow price tag slapped on its cheek: $34.99. She bought it. → Read More

As diplomacy hopes dim, US marshals allies to furnish long-term military aid to Ukraine

The increasing flow of Western weapons into Ukraine — including howitzers, armed drones, tanks and ammunition — amounted to another sign that a war Putin had expected would divide his Western adversaries had instead drawn them much closer together. → Read More

‘Black Panther’ director Ryan Coogler mistaken for bank robber in Atlanta

Bank of America has apologized to director Ryan Coogler after he was assumed to be a bank robber and briefly handcuffed by police while trying to withdraw money from a branch in Atlanta in January. → Read More

Russian forces pound civilians, as Putin calls sanctions a ‘declaration of war’

President Putin warned Saturday that economic sanctions were “akin to a declaration of war,” as the Russian military pummeled civilian targets and continued shelling near the first protected routes intended to allow besieged Ukrainians to flee. → Read More

Russia advances on 3 Ukrainian cities, but meets fierce resistance

The Ukrainian military, outmanned and outgunned, waged ferocious, close-range battles on Saturday to maintain control of the capital, Kyiv, and other cities around the country as intense street fighting broke out on the third day of the Russian invasion. → Read More

Passenger refusing to wear a mask exposed himself, threw can during flight, prosecutors say

The charges represent the latest example of the unruly and sometimes violent behavior that has surged on airplanes since the start of the pandemic. Many of the disturbances have involved passengers who refused to wear masks, as required by the federal government. → Read More

Hostages rescued safely, suspect dies in Texas synagogue standoff

Police on Saturday night rescued a rabbi and several hostages who had been held by a man who claimed to have weapons and explosives at a synagogue in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, ending a tense 11-hour standoff, authorities said. → Read More

Last known slave ship is remarkably well preserved, researchers say

As much as two-thirds of the original structure remains, including the hold below the main deck where 110 people were imprisoned during the ship’s final, brutal journey from Benin to Mobile in 1860. → Read More

Money found by plumber at Joel Osteen’s church is tied to 2014 burglary, police say

Seven years ago, Lakewood Church, the Houston megachurch led by Joel Osteen, the prominent televangelist, reported that $200,000 in cash and $400,000 in checks had been stolen from a church safe. Last month, the money may have been discovered by a plumber fixing a toilet inside a church bathroom. → Read More

Mississippi threatens to sue Brett Favre over $828,000

Mississippi, the state that reveres Hall of Fame quarterback Brett Favre as a homegrown hero, threatened this week to sue him if he does not repay $828,000 that he owes within 30 days, according to the state auditor. → Read More

Costco limits purchases of toilet paper and water

Last year, a frantic run on toilet paper that left store shelves bare across the United States became a symbol of the panic that seized Americans in the early days of the coronavirus pandemic. → Read More

Evacuations from Kabul wind down as US prepares to pull out last troops

Evacuation flights from Kabul’s airport began winding down Saturday as the United States prepared to withdraw its remaining troops from Afghanistan. → Read More

Judge blocks $4b US debt relief program for minority farmers

The judge agreed with critics, who had argued that the program discriminated against white farmers and ranchers because of their race. → Read More

2 airlines will postpone serving alcohol amid surge of in-flight violence

Two major airlines, American and Southwest, have postponed plans to resume serving alcohol on flights in an effort to stop a surge of unruly and sometimes violent behavior by passengers who have shoved, struck, and yelled at flight attendants. → Read More

No, people are not returning pandemic dogs in droves

Animal welfare advocates were delighted when the pandemic prompted thousands of bored and isolated Americans to adopt dogs last year. They also worried that when offices reopened and social life began returning to normal, those new pet owners would cast aside their dogs, like children who had outgrown their teddy bears. Despite some alarmist news reports, the story so far is much happier than… → Read More

Footage shows Louisiana troopers punching, dragging man who later died

According to the AP, one trooper wrestled Ronald Greene to the ground, put him in a choke hold, and punched him in the face. Another trooper briefly dragged him by his ankle shackles as he lay on the ground. → Read More

Five charged in shooting of Lady Gaga’s dog walker

The Los Angeles police said Thursday that an investigation had revealed that James Jackson, 18, Jaylin White, 19, and Lafayette Whaley, 27, were involved in the robbery and shooting of the dog walker. → Read More

Decades after police bombing, Philadelphians ‘sickened’ by handling of victim’s bones

In 1985, police flew a helicopter over a West Philadelphia neighborhood and dropped a bomb on the row house where members of the communal, anti-government group MOVE lived. The bomb started a fire, and police ordered firefighters to let it burn. Eleven people were killed, and more than 60 nearby homes were destroyed. This week officials at two Ivy League universities acknowledged that… → Read More

Sheriff’s deputy kills a Black man in N.C.; few details released about circumstances

The county sheriff declined to release body camera footage or give many details of the case, including the nature of the warrant, how many shots were fired, or whether the man was armed, citing a state investigation. → Read More