Crime briefs of the year in Southfield

Southfield Sun | Published January 17, 2022

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SOUTHFIELD — Here’s a look back at some of the most interesting and bizarre local crime briefs from 2021:


Catalytic converters stolen from 9 commercial buses
SOUTHFIELD — There have been two reports of catalytic converters being taken from commercial buses. 

The first incident occurred Jan. 22 at 4:17 a.m., when a bus driver stated he saw two males in the parking lot with flashlights looking at the buses in the lot. The reporting party did not see the suspects take anything from the buses and did not hear any tools being used. 

The reporting party confronted the suspects, and they jumped the south wall leading to an adjacent apartment complex. Officers searched the area and did not locate the suspects, but they did discover that four catalytic converters had been taken from buses. Officers recovered two saw blades on the step of one of the buses.

The second incident took place sometime between 4 p.m. Jan. 22 and 4:30 a.m. Jan. 23. In this incident, the reporting party told police that five of their commercial transit buses had their catalytic converters stolen. The event most likely occurred early in the morning hours. 


Officers recover AR-15
SOUTHFIELD — A Southfield police officer was on a routine patrol near J L Hudson and Providence drives when he observed a vehicle with tinted windows at 12:24 a.m. Jan. 27. A Law Enforcement Information Network check on the vehicle’s plate came back with the registered owner having a felony warrant from Ohio for carrying a concealed weapon and trafficking marijuana.

When the officer attempted to stop the vehicle, the suspect failed to stop and ignored the officer’s overhead lights and siren. The vehicle pulled into an apartment complex and continued to ignore police. Additional officers were called in and boxed the vehicle in.

When police contacted the driver, he would not cooperate, and only rolled his window down a few inches. Officers were able to see an AR-15 within an arm’s reach of the driver. The weapon was not in a case, and a magazine was just behind the driver in the center console. The driver was asked to turn off and exit the vehicle, but he refused. 

The driver was advised that he had been given a lawful order and if he did not comply, the window would be broken and he would be removed from the vehicle. The driver still refused, at which point officers broke the window with a baton, unlocked the door and removed the driver from the vehicle. 

Officers recovered the AR-15, which was loaded, with a round in the chamber. The suspect had an invalid concealed pistol license. Officers also recovered a type of explosive, a military-type smoke grenade, and two aluminum cases, one with suspected marijuana, and one with barber supplies and a gold badge. 

The Michigan State Police Bomb Squad was notified and took possession of the suspected explosives. They confirmed that one of the items was a military grade smoke grenade. An investigation was ongoing. Pending charges against the suspect included resisting and obstructing an officer, as well as weapons charges. 


Disorderly conduct arrest
SOUTHFIELD — Officers were dispatched to a hospital in the 16000 block of Nine Mile Road at approximately 3:42 a.m. March 24 to help hospital security with a male subject.

Security staff told the officers they had advised the suspect to drop off a female subject with a leg injury. The suspect left his orange Nissan Rogue running unattended in front of the entrance. The suspect entered the hospital and became disruptive, cursing and yelling at staff and security, according to the report. He was asked to stop and leave the building, but he reportedly refused and threatened violence.

One security officer pulled his stun gun out because the suspect became increasingly aggressive and continued making threats. As staff continued to try to get the suspect to leave, he raised his hands as if to throw a punch. Security officers took the suspect to the ground and handcuffed him. Police took the suspect into custody for disorderly conduct. 

While this incident was taking place, someone stole the suspect’s vehicle that was running unattended in front of the hospital. 

Security said the suspect had been charging his phone on the property and had been asked to leave several times. 


Stolen vehicle recovered in fast food drive-thru
SOUTHFIELD — At 6:25 p.m. June 2, officers responded to a report of a driver slumped over in a vehicle in the 28000 block of Northwestern Highway. The driver was reclining in his vehicle, sleeping in the drive-thru at a fast-food business. The plates of the 2020 Hyundai Tucson had been reported stolen in Canton.

The vehicle was in drive, and the driver had his foot on the brake pedal. Officers positioned their fully marked patrol vehicles at the front and the rear of the stolen vehicle to prevent it from fleeing. When officers woke the driver up, he attempted to flee and slammed the front and back of the stolen vehicle into officers’ vehicles. The driver went back and forth several times trying to flee. 

Officers broke the window of the vehicle and forcefully removed the driver from the car. He resisted officers until they were able to handcuff him. The vehicle was confirmed to have been stolen, and the subject was taken into custody. 


Man steals key fob, flees, asks for ride
SOUTHFIELD — Police were called after a man wandering a car dealership in the 28000 block of Telegraph Road grabbed a set of keys from the service area and took off after being asked to leave at 4:38 p.m. Aug. 9.

The man had been walking in and out of the service department asking for car keys. When management asked him to leave, he grabbed a set of keys from the service area and ran to the back lot, attempting to take a vehicle. 

Officers searched the area looking for the man, who was last seen running north from the dealership. As officers were still investigating the incident, a call came in that there was a subject lying on the ground in a nearby apartment complex. He was covered in mud and debris as if he had been running in the nearby woods. He asked the resident who found him for water and a ride. 

Officers arrived and determined that it was the suspect from the dealership, and he was taken into custody, and the keys to a Jeep were recovered.


Prostitute robbed after sex
SOUTHFIELD — A woman identified as a prostitute reported an armed robbery after having sex with a man at 1:35 p.m. Sept. 5 in the 27000 block of Northwestern.

According to the report, the victim stated she had made a date on the phone with a man. Later, a different man arrived at 1:15 a.m. at the place she was at and paid her an undisclosed amount of cash for sex.

After the two had sex, the man opened the door to leave. The woman stated that at the door was a short man holding a handgun, wearing all black with a black ski mask and gloves. The woman said the gun holder had an accent that sounded like the man she had made the date with on the phone.

The suspect at the door told the victim and the other man to get on the floor, and they both did. The suspect took the cash the man had paid the woman and then demanded all of her money. The masked man took an undisclosed amount of cash and the woman’s two cellphones. She believed the man she had sex with was in on the robbery.


Stolen Dodge found
SOUTHFIELD — Officers were on patrol at 5:14 p.m. Sept. 20 when they came across a stolen vehicle. 

According to the report, the vehicle, a 2015 white Dodge Charger, had been stolen in Detroit and was parked near the entrance of an apartment complex in the 16000 block of North Park Drive. 

“The vehicle was heavily tinted and Officers believed that the vehicle was unoccupied but it started to pull away from Officers towards the entrance,” the report states. “When Officers attempted to stop the vehicle, it fled from Officers. After striking a citizen’s vehicle the suspect then deliberately struck a patrol vehicle. Officers utilized the pit (pursuit intervention technique) maneuver and stopped the vehicle from continuing to flee.”

Police took the male driver into custody, as well as a female passenger. Officers also located a rifle and a handgun in the vehicle.


Man breaks dozens of windows at abandoned school
SOUTHFIELD — Southfield police officers responded to the 18000 block of George Washington Drive for a burglary alarm at 8:57 a.m. Sept. 26.

Officers located a male subject exiting the building, the old McKinley School.

The man admitted to breaking out more than 20 windows in the building and entering without permission. He was taken into custody and charged with malicious destruction of property more than $1,000 and breaking and entering.


Stolen vehicle recovered
SOUTHFIELD — Police located a vehicle reported stolen in Oak Park while on patrol at 6:04 p.m. Sept. 28 at Eight Mile and Evergreen roads.

According to the report, an officer was on patrol in the area when he located a gray Dodge Challenger Scat Pack that had been stolen in Oak Park on Sept. 23. The officer continued to follow the vehicle while waiting for backup. 

“After the vehicle pulled into the business on (Eight Mile Road), just west of Lahser, additional Officers assisted in boxing in the vehicle. All three occupants were removed from the vehicle and detained while Officers conducted their investigation. After completing their investigation all three occupants were taken into custody,” a police report states.

Officers were able to recover a key fob from one of the suspects that was for a Jeep Cherokee Trailhawk. The stolen vehicle responded to this key fob, but it was not the correct key fob for the vehicle, as the fob had been reprogrammed. The sunroof also had been broken out on the stolen vehicle.


Robbery reported at hotel
SOUTHFIELD — A report states a woman was at a hotel at 27000 Northwestern when she heard a knock at the door at 12:26 a.m. Oct. 3. She answered the door and saw a male she recognized, though only knew by nickname, and a female was there. 

The two pushed their way into the room, the victim stated, and the woman brought her to the ground, got on top of her and held her down. The woman also kept asking about money, but the victim replied she didn’t have any.

The woman got off of the victim, went through her purse, and took her phone and driver’s license. “The male suspect told her that she owed him and this was payback. Victim was unsure what she owed this subject,” the police report states.


Woman throws phone out window
SOUTHFIELD — An altercation between a man and woman was reported to Southfield police at 11 p.m. Oct. 17 near West 10 Mile and Evergreen roads.

The report states the man told police he was in the front passenger seat of a vehicle being driven by a female acquaintance. He said the two were discussing their relationship, and when he stated he wasn’t interested in a relationship, the woman took his iPhone 12 and a chain with a pendant and threw them out of the window of her moving vehicle. 

The man was unable to locate the items after the woman stopped the vehicle and let the victim out of the car to search for his belongings.


Stolen vehicle strikes police cars
SOUTHFIELD — A stolen vehicle was recovered by Southfield police at 6:03 p.m. Oct. 19 in the 16000 block of North Park Drive.

According to police, a gray Dodge Durango with a stolen Ohio license plate was parked at the entrance to an apartment building. A search of the plate showed it to be stolen in Toledo from a white Dodge Charger.

Two patrol vehicles were positioned in front of and behind the vehicle in an effort to pull it over. The vehicle ignored commands from officers and deliberately struck a vehicle’s front bumper. It then accelerated toward the second patrol vehicle, pushed the vehicle out of his way and accelerated at a high rate of speed.

Officers used a precision immobilization technique on the Durango “and caused it to spin around and face E/B in the W/B lanes of North Park Dr,” the report stated. “Officers then made intentional contact with the front of the Durango to prevent further pursuit. The Durango became disabled.”

After several minutes of verbal commands from officers, the driver of the vehicle exited. He was placed into custody. Two other occupants in the vehicle also exited, and they were detained and questioned. A rifle was recovered from the vehicle as well.


Suspect attempts break-in
SOUTHFIELD — A burglary was reported to have occurred between 6 p.m. Nov. 1 and 7 a.m. Nov. 2 in the 21000 block of West Eight Mile Road.

Police said a suspect entered the rear fenced-in lot and attempted to cut the steel gate with a Sawzall. The report stated a Sawzall blade was stuck in the door, and five other Sawzall blades were on the ground next to the gate door. The suspect was not able to cut through the gate’s lock. 

“Suspect punched the lock on a GMC truck and damaged the ignition to start the vehicle,” the report states. “(The) suspect started the truck and attempted to pull the gate off with a yellow tow strap that belonged to the business. The strap broke and was still attached to the gate and vehicle. It appears the suspect fled the scene without taking any items.”

Police didn’t have any suspect information.


Man robbed after online hookup
SOUTHFIELD — An armed robbery was reported at 5:05 p.m. Nov. 5 in the 26000 block of Telegraph Road.

Police stated the victim in the case liked a picture on Instagram and started messaging with a woman, who only went by a first name. The two texted back and forth and agreed to meet in person. The man picked the woman up, and they went to a hotel.

The man thought the woman was acting strangely at the hotel and saw her texting a lot on her phone. They both left the hotel together at 3 a.m., when a blue four-door vehicle with tinted windows backed in against the building. Two gunmen exited the vehicle. 

“Victim attempted to run but fell and sprained his ankle. The two suspects pointed their guns at him as he laid on the ground. One of the males told the victim to give him his watch, money and chains/necklaces. None of these items were visible to the suspects, but they knew what to ask for. Most likely the female was involved and told suspects what the victim had. The female also ran off saying she was going to call the police. Neither suspect tried to stop her and she was never located and never called the police,” the report states.

The suspects ended up taking three necklaces, cash and a watch from the victim. The female suspect possibly was identified, and the investigation was ongoing.