CUNNINGHAM_DARREN
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As a FOX 17 Problem Solver, I try to help people who feel they have nowhere else to turn. We have a great team that prides itself in getting results and seeing a situation through to the end.

I couldn't have imagined having this opportunity when I began at FOX 17 in August 2011. Since then, I've reported on a wide range of issues and events happening around West Michigan.

Before helping launch Problem Solvers, I served as the Grand Rapids city commission beat reporter for two years. I covered the region's largest municipal government.

My professional journalism career began in Lansing. I cut my teeth in the news business at WLNS.
From 2006 to 2011, I wore many hats and reported the news for my last 3 years in the Capital City.

Before that, I graduated from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Go blue!

When I'm not reporting the news, I enjoy spending time with my family, volunteering at my church, and running long distance.


Recent Articles
  • kcollege

    Kalamazoo College increases patrols following armed robbery

    KALAMAZOO, Mich. — The Kalamazoo Department of Public Safety’s assistant chief said detectives believe they have an idea who’s behind an armed robbery from Jan. 19. Assistant chief Donald Webster said the incident occurred on the campus of Kalamazoo College. Five students reported being robbed at gunpoint. Police said the robber took their cash and cell phones. Fortunately no one was hurt. Dean of students Sarah Westfall said the undergrads did the right thing. “They were in pairs. They called […]

  • Detectives search for two suspects in armed home invasion in Sparta

    SPARTA, Mich. — Laura Klaasan can’t believe her neighbors were victims of a home invasion. Police responded just before 9 a.m. Friday to a report of a break-in in the 200 block of Alma in Sparta. The victim had been held at gunpoint, according to police. “They’re down-to-earth people. They really are. They’re good people,” Klaasan described her neighbors. Sparta police said a woman in her early 20s was home alone when two men broke in, tied her up and rummaged […]

  • FOX 17 Problem Solvers help young mom get her money back

    KENT COUNTY, Mich. — It’s a problem solved for Toni Merriweather and her 2-year-old daughter. In September, she gave a $680 deposit to landlord Steve Benner. However, she found the locks had been changed when she went to move in. After Toni’s mother contacted the FOX 17 Problem Solvers, we went to work on the 19-year-old’s behalf. Watch the video for her story.

  • M-57 renamed after soldier; family needs help paying for two road signs

    Around 8:50 p.m., the $1,000 goal was surpassed. Family says, the remainder will go towards a scholarship in Prentler’s name. MONTCALM COUNTY, Mich. — M-57 through Montcalm County has been renamed the “Joey Prentler Memorial Highway.” The fallen soldier’s aunt started this Gofundme page to help pay for two commemorative road signs. MDOT will put them up. Prentler’s mother, Tammy, said the two signs will cost $500 each. “So far, we’re up to… $535 on it. So it’s going slow. It’s been 28 days […]

  • Cold case victim’s parents reflect as case moves to trial

    KENT COUNTY, Mich. — A Kent County cold case is headed to trial. Joel Battaglia was brutally beaten in the summer of 1990. He died from his injuries. Since then, his case went cold and a killer remained on the loose. In late 2014, detectives got the break they were looking for. A witness, Sheila Reed, told them she saw the brutal beating. She testified that she held the information for more than 24 years. Aurelius Marshall, 56, is accused […]

  • Landlord’s daughter speaks out after Problem Solvers investigation

    GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Sarah Benner, the daughter of a Grand Rapids landlord, spoke out to FOX 17 on camera today. The FOX 17 Problem Solvers did a story on landlord Steve Benner yesterday. It involved a young mother who said she paid Benner a $680 deposit to rent a room in a Grand Rapids building. Days later, she said she found the front door was locked. The news station reached out to Steve Benner for comment. He said he […]

  • BENNER

    Young mom out $680 and nowhere to live

    GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Toni Merriweather, 19, and her 2-year-old daughter are homeless. She said she’s been bouncing from place to place, staying with relatives. In September, Merriweather says she paid Steve Benner $680 to rent a studio apartment on the corner of Burton and Eastern in southeast Grand Rapids. The day she went to move in, Merriweather said the front door was locked. She said Benner told her the bank took over the building. Through a court order, another company […]

  • dispatch

    I-94 Dispatcher: “It was the day that was never going to end”

    KALMAZOO, Mich. — As a catastrophic pileup unfolded January 9 on I-94, a group of men and women worked behind the scenes to make sure things didn’t get any worse. Kalamazoo County dispatcher Lolly Williams and Kalamazoo County Sheriff’s Deputy John Schmidt said that day started out like any other. There was the occasional accident due to icy roads, but the call volume ramped up just after 9 a.m. “It was the day that was never going to end,” Williams […]

  • cash

    Police catch suspected serial bank robber in high-speed chase

    PORTAGE, Mich — Law enforcement in southwest Michigan caught a suspected serial bank robber Tuesday afternoon. The suspect is a 49-year-old man from Indiana. Portage Police said he robbed Old National Bank on Westnedge Avenue. He is also accused of similar robberies that took place on Jan. 5 in Oshtemo Township and January 9 in South Haven. After today’s robbery, Deputy Chief Nick Arnold said the ‘money dye’ pack exploded as the man ran from the bank. The suspect dropped the […]