Citizens crowd meeting; DeWitt police officer reinstated

After being fired, a DeWitt police officer appealed the township’s decision with the community by his side. More than 75 community members were present to support the officer. Kelsey LesterCitizens gather along the walls and outside of the Township Board meeting. The news came as a shock to Officer Robert Stump and his family on Feb. 17, when he received the notice of his separation of employment after 14 years of service.

DeWitt Police getting faster body cams, weapons that look less dangerous

Eli McKownDeWitt Police Chief Brad Ferguson introduces new body cameras, non-lethal alternatives at the DeWitt City Council meeting on Feb. 14. New tools including body cameras, Tasers and other non-lethal weapons are coming to DeWitt, Police Chief Bruce Ferguson told the City Council on Feb. 14. The body cameras are expected to arrive very soon as police completed another round of training this week.

DeWitt Valentine's Dinner Story - Kelsey Lester

Sweethearts gather for steaks, small talk at DeWitt VFW post

DeWitt residents gathered at their Veterans of Foreign Wars post for a community steak dinner to celebrate Valentine’s Day. Post Commander John Williams said love was in the air. 

Kelsey Lester

“Basically everybody here is married and has sweethearts and everything like that, so we  figured in having a nice dinner for everybody,” said Williams. “We figured they’d enjoy it, so they didn’t have to do any cooking at home.” 

People made their way to the hall for small talk and a medium-rare steak. For volunteer Evelyn Powell, this was unexpected and just as memorable as the post’s  other events. 

“We normally do a fish fry, but there was a shortage of fish. People can’t get fish,” said Powell. “There’s people that come in (and say) ‘oh, I haven’t seen you in forever.’ Once in a while, they have a local band on a Friday night and then you end up  meeting or reconnecting with people you haven’t seen in a long time.” 

Powell’s husband, Terry Powell, also found the power in small community events like this Valentine’s dinner. 

“We need them.

DeWitt community convincingly passes $66 million school bond

The  $66 million bond approved for DeWitt Public Schools Nov. 2 means work can begin next year. 

The six-year bond is a renewal of the previous bond, meaning there will be no tax rate increase in the 2021 levy. It will cover district needs such as addressing aged buildings, updating educational technology, and improving athletics, arts, and extracurriculars. The vote passed overwhelmingly with 70.9% of the 3,354 voters in favor of the bond. 

“What an amazing day to be a DeWitt Panther! Thank you to the community for supporting the bond proposal.

On stage: DeWitt High School performs Les Misérables musical

DeWitt High School students have been working since August to stage the intricate musical Les Misérables. On Nov. 4, DeWitt High School performing arts took the stage for its production of Les Misérables. Seventy cast and crew members are took on the powerful and moving plot. Senior Bryce Debri is playing the main role of Jean Valjean.

DeWitt schools panther print

DeWitt citizens call for clarity as $66 million bond vote nears

While community members are excited to see the district take steps to improve schools with its Nov. 2 bond issue, it does not come without concern. Some DeWitt citizens want to know exactly how much and where the money will be spent. “I think it’s critical to the community to know that we’re going to commit and support $66 million to the school district and that we know it’s going to be spent in appropriate political way to specific items,” Scot Ellsworth said at the Oct. 11 school board meeting.

Dr. Shanna Spickard

DeWitt schools’ proposal comes to a vote

DeWitt schoolsWhen Dr. Shanna Spickard became DeWitt schools superintendent in May, the district’s $66 million bond proposal was already on the to-do list. On Nov. 2, DeWitt school district voters will decide on a $66 million bond issue that would address aged building systems, updating educational technology, and improving athletics arts and extracurriculars. A renewal, the 6-year proposal would maintain current taxing levels. Even before Dr. Shanna Spickard became superintendent in May, the proposal was on its way to time he ballot. Language was approved in June.