A sentencing in the Baby Kate Murder case.

Sean Phillips was sentenced this morning to19-45 years in prison for the second degree murder charge of his daughter Katherine "Baby Kate" Phillips. Phillips will get some credit for time served. The courtroom was packed  and the hearing started 20 minutes late. There were at least 8 news cameras, WMOM represented radio news reporting, a ½ dozen uniformed officers and 2 security guards to escort Sean to and from the courtroom. Prosecutor Donna Penderguest said Phillips created psychological injury on the community and requested 40-75 years.  Defence attorney David Glancey asked the sentence to be reduced to 15-20 years. Sean Phillips has remained silent since he was 1st arrested 5 years ago for the disappearance of his daughter “Baby Kate” Phillips. He was given the opportunity to speak but said “Not at this time your honor.” In the end, Judge Peter Wadel split the difference at 19-45 years. He said he could not see Phillips as an evil person but he was very immature at the time and not ready for a family. Phillips has 42 days to appeal the case.

First Snow Flies

First Snow 2016

The first snowfall of the year hit the lakeshore yesterday. Road conditions are ideal for creating dangerous black ice under a layer of snow. A semi went in a ditch Thursday night around U.S. 31 and Johnson Road. More lake-effect snow is expected. Drivers are encouraged to completely clean off vehicles to prevent snow slide off, be aware of parking restrictions and to drive slow in these slippery conditions.

Healthcare barriers reduced in Oceana County

Assistance with cost for transportation to health care being offered in Oceana County for low income residents. Amanda Wilson, coordinator for the Ride to Health Program said, "We're helping Oceana County residents get to anything healthcare related. [The ride] has to be within Oceana County. They can have a car. Dad has to go to work and mom's home with the kids and the kids get sick. They need a ride to the doctor and we can help. [Rides] can be [for] physical health,mental health, substance abuse counseling, and dental. We are trying to expand but right now it's just [transpotation to] healthcare we can help with."

Oceana’s Home Partnership’s Ride to Health Program is partnering with the Oceana Council on Aging transportation system to connect residents to any healthcare related appointment in Oceana County. Some healthcare providers have also partnered with the Ride to Health program to allow participants the opportunity to receive their vouchers with the participating partner when making their next appointment. Ride to Health’s partnership with Disability Network’s transportation program is also allowing those with disabilities to stretch their miles further by allowing them to save their miles for activities like grocery shopping, which is not an approved ride through the Ride to Health program. If you are interested in applying or becoming a participating partner in the program, you can contact Oceana’s Home Partnership at (231)873-2222 or online at

Ludington City Council 12.5.16


The Ludington City council met last night. Communications with city officials began with Vic Burwell and Ed Miller presenting on the 2017 Ludington Lake Jump benefitting the Mason County Sport Hall of Fame. Revenue created by the 2017 Lake Jump would go toward educational and hands on activities inside the Hall of Fame. Mayor Pro-tem Kaye Ferguson Holman recognized Barry Neil with House of Flavors restaurants for the Guinness World Record Longest Ice Cream and proclaimed the 2nd Saturday in June as “Ice Cream Day” Mr. Neil thanked the community for working together to make the event a success. The ratifications agreement between the city of ludington and Fraternal Order Police of Labor Council was approved as well as salary amounts for Treasurer and Clerk.  The City resolved to amend the Solid Waste Management Plan to allow household waste from Mason County to be sent to landfills in Wexford County. The final item of business was the consent of easement holder for Straits Steel and Wire. Years of waste from Straits steel and wire has contaminated the property. Straits steel and wire has cleaned the property to the requirements of a “no action order” requiring no additional clean up at this time. This would make the property restricted to industrial use. They need the consent of both Dead Poet LLC, the current owner of the property, and the city to leave the property as is. The city approved the easement and reserved the right to request reimbursement if any additional clean up for the property is required.

Miss Ludington Area 2017 Crowned

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Miss Ludington Area was crowned on Saturday night. Local ladies graced the stage, competing in categories of talent, interview, fitness and evening wear. At the end of the night, Leah Massie was crowned Miss Ludington Area and awarded the Susie Brillhart Memorial Scholarship.

Abbie Finner was first runner up, receiving the Kaley and Fritz Petersen Academic Scholarship and impressed the judges with her talent. Aubry Healy was second runner up winning both, people’s choice, and Miss Congeniality, along with Marissa Hansen.


Miss Michigan, Arianna Quan, was in attendance. She said. "There's so many different facets. What a lot of people don't realize is that you have to be smart to compete in a pagent. I love preparing my platform, doing research, keeping up to date with current events and speaking about it" During the competition she showcased her talent of playing the piano. She also participated in the Pink Princess meet and greet earlier that day.

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