$1 million bond set for suspect in police chase

By: Jessica Strachan | Southfield Sun | Published October 10, 2012


SOUTHFIELD — Police say they have identified a suspect who led them on a chase Oct. 4, landing one officer in critical condition at a local hospital.

James Bracy, 24, from Detroit, was arraigned at 1 p.m. Oct. 5 and given a $1 million bond by Magistrate Donna Posey of the 46th District Court in Southfield. Bracy faces a multitude of charges, including obstruction, weapons charges, driving while license suspended and drunken driving.
It was just before 1 a.m. when Southfield police were called to the T.G.I. Friday’s restaurant at 26299 Evergreen about a person reportedly brandishing a handgun in the parking lot, according to Sgt. Brian Bassett of the Southfield Police Department.

The suspect was in his vehicle when officers arrived. During questioning, Bracy reportedly put his car into drive and fled police, Bassett said.
Southfield police pursued the suspect, Bassett said, and Beverly Hills officers were alerted. Lathrup Village officers on patrol also heard the dispatch and went to the scene, according to reports.

The chase went on for just over two miles into Beverly Hills.
Beverly Hills Public Safety Director Rich Torongeau said the suspect reached speeds of over 100 mph and was seen tossing a handgun from his vehicle. That’s when Bracy allegedly lost control of his vehicle and struck a fire hydrant before striking a Beverly Hills officer, who was outside his vehicle at the time placing “stop sticks” in the roadway.

Torongeau said the impact launched the officer 30 feet from the road and resulted in a broken femur, hip, arm and wrist.
He underwent two surgeries and is expected to need additional operations to repair his injuries in coming days. His identity has not been released at the request of his family.

Lathrup Village officer Michael Zang was one of the assisting officers who overheard Southfield dispatch put out an alert about the armed suspect. Southfield officers “frantically” requested priority, he reported, stating “flee and elude, radio.” He said he saw an officer make intentional contact with the suspect’s vehicle, but “it escaped anyway.”
The suspect passed Zang, who pursued the vehicle for about half a mile until several more Southfield units were in the area.

Police were able to recover the weapon thrown from the suspect’s vehicle, as well as an additional handgun inside the suspect’s vehicle, according to Torongeau.
A not guilty plea was entered on Bracy’s behalf at the arraignment.  His attorney, TaTaNisha Reed, could not be reached for comment.

According to Bassett, Bracy’s next pre-examination is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. Oct. 15 with Judge Bill Richards.

Staff Writer Robin Ruehlen contributed to this report.