Woods police investigate missing Parcells PTO money

By: Maria Allard | Grosse Pointe Times | Published March 18, 2016

 Crime Stoppers of Michigan has released surveillance photos of a suspect and the getaway car wanted in connection with a bank robbery that occurred March 2 at the Comerica Bank at 20200 Mack Ave.

Crime Stoppers of Michigan has released surveillance photos of a suspect and the getaway car wanted in connection with a bank robbery that occurred March 2 at the Comerica Bank at 20200 Mack Ave.

Photo provided by Crime Stoppers of Michigan

GROSSE POINTE WOODS — Two unrelated incidents of possible criminal activity that occurred in Grosse Pointe Woods remain under investigation. 

After probing into a report of alleged missing funds from a Parcells Middle School Parent Teacher Organization financial account, Grosse Pointe Woods public safety detectives have turned over their findings to the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office for review. 

Grosse Pointe Woods public safety detectives were alerted about the alleged missing money in January and an investigation began. Detective Ryan Schroerlucke said it was reported that about $7,700 could not be accounted for. 

Questions were raised about financial matters within the PTO after the school’s annual holiday bazaar in December. Schroerlucke was told the event usually raises approximately $11,000, but this year’s bazaar only brought in about $5,000.

“There had been some money that came up missing and some odd transactions by a member of the board,” Schroerlucke said. “There were discoveries of numerous checks made out to ‘cash’ and withdrawals from the bank (without) documentation for them.”

Schroerlucke said the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office will let detectives know “in the coming weeks if they will authorize charges.”

“They are reviewing everything,” the detective said. 

The investigation has concentrated on one person. 

“It’s believed to be one person involved,” Schroerlucke said. 

In a separate incident, Crime Stoppers of Michigan is offering a cash reward of up to $1,000 for information received through its anonymous tip line that leads to the arrest of the person responsible for a bank robbery earlier this month.

According to a news release from Crime Stoppers of Michigan Communications Manager Shirley Schuler, the bank robbery occurred just before 2 p.m. March 2 at the Comerica Bank at 20200 Mack Ave.

Grosse Pointe Woods Detective Tony Shalut said the suspect entered the bank and presented a note to a teller.

“It was something to the effect of, ‘I have a gun. Give me the money,’ and he left,” Shalut said, adding that a weapon was never revealed. 

Shalut declined to comment specifically on how much money was taken, but he said the robber left “with a substantial amount of money.”

The teller was shaken up, police said, but no injuries were reported. 

The suspect in the incident was described as a black man with a medium build and a salt-and-pepper beard. He was wearing a dark knit hat, a brown hooded sweatshirt, dark brown trousers and white tennis shoes. He escaped in an older-model, four-door gray Pontiac. 

The news release did not state how much money was taken or how the robbery occurred. 

Anonymous tips can be made online at www.1800speakup.org or phoned in by calling (800) SPEAK-UP. Tips can also be made via text by texting CSM and the tip to the number 274637, which spells out CRIMES.

In the news release, Crime Stoppers officials reminded the public to consider suspects “armed and dangerous,” and to “not try to apprehend criminals.” 

Tips also can be called into the Grosse Pointe Public Safety Department at (313) 343-2400. Ask for the detective bureau during the daytime. If after hours, leave the information with the dispatcher.