Bill Laitner, Detroit Free Press

Bill Laitner

Detroit Free Press

Michigan, United States

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Recent articles by Bill:

Real estate developer with ties to Taylor mayor pleads guilty to bribery conspiracy

Shady Awad, an alleged co-conspirator of indicted Taylor Mayor Rick Sollars, has pleaded guilty to bribery conspiracy. → Read More

Rapid at-home COVID tests fly off Michigan store shelves as pandemic demand outpaces supply

Free Press reporters scoured metro Detroit's drugstores, pharmacy chains and big-box stores, looking for rapid COVID-19 tests. Here's what we found. → Read More

2021 Detroit Free Press Marathon: Follow along as thousands run in annual event

The first wave of thousands of entrants dashed away from the starting line in the 44th annual Detroit Free Press Marathon at 7 a.m. → Read More

Free clinics get boost in state's budget, but depend on donations and volunteers

As medical costs keep soaring, it might seem odd that we all save when nonprofit clinics like this one near Detroit give free health and dental care. → Read More

Royal Oak election focused on controversial move of city's war memorial

In the local election in Royal Oak, veterans and their allies — mad about the city's move of a war memorial — are seeking to oust four incumbents. → Read More

Birmingham art exhibit celebrates togetherness after divisive election, pandemic isolation

Artists usually work in secret but at a library near Detroit, a big display is up showing how 40 artists collaborated and zipped their work together. → Read More

Michigan child, 7, remembered for expressing boundless love despite rare disorder

This 7-year-old's short life kindled an infinitude of inspiration and love in his parents, Robert and Amy Huschka, and all who knew them. → Read More

Motor Bella auto show roars into action despite rainy skies

The newest auto show around is Motor Bella in Pontiac, Mich., just north of Detroit. It's a mostly outdoor display with exciting off-road ride-alongs. → Read More

$300K tucked into Michigan budget will fund I-75 noise tests

Cool beans: Two weeks after a Free Press story on freeway noise in Troy, Mich., the state OK'd $300K to test whether to build more sound walls there. → Read More

Northern Michigan vacation paradise tops state's COVID-19 vaccination rates

Where's Michigan's top rate for getting COVID shots? It's not a county loaded with medical centers or jammed with upscale suburbs. It's Up North. . . → Read More

Huge sculpture set to mark trail on Belle Isle to get preview at Whitney restaurant

Two brothers, one sculpture, 8 tons of steel and glass, the east end of Detroit's Belle Isle State Park, an anonymous donor? Seriously. Read on. . . → Read More

Moved to Pontiac, new outdoor auto show features 'ride-alongs' and test drives of new cars

Motor Bella is a scaled-down Detroit auto show, moved north to Pontiac's M1 Concourse, running Sept. 23-26. See for tickets. → Read More

Detroit Zoo names Dr. Hayley Murphy as new director. She's the first woman to hold position

The Detroit Zoo's new boss is a woman. She follows the zoo's acclaimed long-time director Ron Kagan, who retired after 28 years of "green" zoo awards. → Read More

How Michigan is slowly taking away power from local governments with 'political move'

Preemption is the term for when a higher level of government takes power from one below. It's happening nationwide and Michigan is ground zero. → Read More

Write-in campaigns fall short for incumbent mayors of Pontiac, Taylor

Forced to run as write-ins, two incumbent mayors -- one in Pontiac, the other in Taylor -- seemed headed for defeat early Wednesday. → Read More

1 lane of NB I-75 reopens in Troy, 1 lane SB stays open, other lanes shut for weeks

I-75 north of Detroit, a key interstate route, was shut tight after a tanker-truck fire on July 12. Now, just one lane is open each way. → Read More

Angry veterans mad over portable johns after winning spot on Royal Oak ballots

This fight has angry veterans, alleged voter suppression and newbies suddenly taking on incumbents. Can it get any hotter? Just add portable toilets. → Read More

Oakland County's economic prospects are crucial to Michigan's recovery, and here's the forecast

Experts say Michigan's economy is tied to its richest county, Oakland. So, as Oakland bounces back from COVID closures, so might go all of Michigan. → Read More

Clawson mayor who resigned, then changed her mind, gets her job back

Scripture resigned nearly a month ago. But in mid-May, she changed her mind, citing an obscure city council rule that she said allowed her to return. → Read More

Relocation of Royal Oak war memorial sparks war of words between veterans, officials

Moving a war memorial can be touchy. Take this Detroit suburb. You have noisy debates, a political campaign and now a lawsuit. But the city moved it. → Read More