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I love reporting the news in West Michigan.


Recent Articles
  • tanning

    Tanning, fitness business closes abruptly; prepaid customers upset

    MONTCALM COUNTY, Mich. – JoAnn Plath lives a short distance from Dreamland Tanning and Fitness in Howard City. She said the salon’s hot lights help soothe her fibromyalgia, so earlier this year she paid for unlimited access for one year. She paid $221.10, according to her bank statement. “I went there for 3 months before they closed,” Plath said. According to Plath, the business closed without notice in late June. The sign on their door said they won’t be reopening. […]

  • Man repaid by repairman; stove fixed for free by Good Samaritan

    Follow Darren Cunningham on Facebook WEST MICHIGAN — One victim of an alleged rogue repairman has found a happy conclusion after he contacted the FOX 17 Problem Solvers. Wednesday, Jeff Duby was repaid by Doug Westen via an acquaintance.   On top of that, another repairman fixed his stove for free. The FOX 17 Problem Solvers report on Duby’s broken gas stove  sparked a large response both online and in the Problem Solvers email inbox. Messages poured in from other […]

  • repairmanpic

    Daughter of alleged scammer speaks out after FOX 17 story

    WEST MICHIGAN — The daughter of an alleged scammer exposed by the FOX 17 Problem Solvers reached out to FOX 17. Doug Westen owns a company called A-1 Appliance Repair in the Grand Rapids area. He’s accused of taking people’s money and disappearing. After the story on Westen aired, FOX 17 received more than a dozen emails and Facebook messages from people who said they’ve been scammed by him. Jeff Duby said he gave Westen $269.34 to repair his broken […]

  • Appliance repairman accused of taking money and disappearing

    WEST MICHIGAN — Jeff Duby says a man named Doug Westen took his money for an appliance repair and ran. Westen claims affiliation with A-1 Appliance Repair out of the Grand Rapids area. For Duby, getting around is difficult these days as he recovers from a recent surgery. He has the added stress of trying to track down Westen. Duby responded to an ad to have the repairman look at his broken stove. “He lifted this up,” Duby said, pointing […]

  • family

    Boy recalls fire that left 18 people homeless

    GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Eighteen people are now homeless due to a fire that destroyed an apartment building on Grand Rapids’ northwest side, Thursday evening. Isaiah Slawinski, 11, and his mom Tricia live 5 doors down from the building. The destroyed building is on the corner of Fourth and Davis. “I honestly didn’t do it, and I was scared to death yesterday,” Isaiah said. As firefighters continued to douse hotspots and assess the damage Friday, the mother and son said […]

  • Grand Rapids street repair projects begin today

    GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — The city of Grand Rapids started road repair for its Vital Streets Improvement Program today. In May, voters approved a plan to continue to pay a tax to raise $4.2 million for street repairs. The tax  renewal is set to kick in July of next year. Tia Cleveland lives on Lafayette Avenue in the Heritage Hill district. “I think it’s awesome that they’re finally fixing all the big holes in the road. Been a lot of […]

  • uber

    Uber starts service in Kalamazoo and Grand Rapids

    WEST MICHIGAN, Mich. —  Uber started service Grand Rapids and Kalamazoo today. It’s a company that provides a taxi-like service through an app on your smart phone. Riders sign up with a credit card, and then they can request a driver come pick them up. The rates vary. The company isn’t free from controversy. Issues with insurance/accident lawsuits, and conflicts with local government when it comes to regulation have come up. When it comes to notifying a city of Uber’s plans […]

  • Police: Elderly woman targeted by scam in Grand Haven

    GRAND HAVEN, Mich. — Police said an 87-year-old woman living on the 900 block of Waverly Avenue was the target of scam, Tuesday afternoon. Grand Haven residents FOX 17 spoke with wanted to remain anonymous out of fear for a few fraudulent men on the loose. “Whoever it was came to our house a few weeks ago. So there are people lurking around that shouldn’t be,” a concerned neighbor said. Residents describe the area as a safe and typically quiet […]

  • Grandmother asks Problem Solvers to save kids’ Christmas… in July

    GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Late last year, Margaret Mieras said the Kurio 7s tablet caught her attention because it came with 65 preloaded games. “Of course, the kids seen (the commercials), and they just begged for them,” she recalled. It’s a device eight-year-old Ashton and five-year-old Alaina would enjoy. So with the help of a friend, Mieras paid for the purchase through Kmart.com on November 28th. That was just in time for Christmas. The tablets cost $160 each. “They had […]