OK. Next time you open a fortune cookie, you might want to give the message careful consideration. Last week, after dinner out with his wife, William Johnson cracked open a fortune cookie. The little piece of paper inside told him: You will soon come into a lot of gold. The Southwick, Massachusetts man went out the next day, he bought a lottery ticket. He scratched it off, and the prize wasn't gold, but he could use it to buy a lot. He won a million dollars.
As Cleveland embraces national attention for everything from its booming arts and culinary scene to its redevelopment plans, it struggles with recent high-profile crimes. Some residents and tourists are left with news whiplash as they try to figure out what these diverging storylines say about the city.
It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning. I'm David Greene.
RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:
And I'm Renee Montagne. Detroit is broke. But a federal judge is holding hearings to determine whether Detroit is broke enough to qualify for bankruptcy protection. The court is examining whether the city has done everything possible to put more money in its coffers. Quinn Klinefelter of member station WDET reports one thing is certain - Detroit is struggling to bring into its coffers tax revenue.
Los Angeles police officers take a break during a basketball game with residents of the Nickerson Gardens housing project in July 2011. Violent crime at Nickerson Gardens and two nearby housing projects has fallen by almost half since 2010.
Credit Thomas Watkins / AP
The Los Angeles Police Department helped launch the Watts Bears, a team of the Pee Wee division of Pop Warner football, in 2012. The players come from the neighborhood and practice at a park that's considered a neutral site between local gangs.
Credit Courtesy of The Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles
On most weeknights, in the middle of his shift, Los Angeles police officer Keith Mott trades his gun and uniform for a T-shirt and shorts, and heads to a park in the Watts neighborhood of South Los Angeles. He's there to coach 7- and 8-year-old boys on the Pop Warner Pee Wee football team, the Watts Bears.
The kids come from three nearby housing projects: Jordan Downs, Nickerson Gardens and Imperial Courts. The park was carefully chosen. It's a neutral site for local gangs. Otherwise, most of the Bears' parents wouldn't allow them to come and play.