Grosse Pointe crime briefs of the year

By: K. Michelle Moran | Grosse Pointe Times | Published January 2, 2019

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GROSSE POINTES — Here’s a look back at some of the most interesting and bizarre local crime briefs from 2018:


Suspicious package investigated
GROSSE POINTE SHORES — A 24-year-old Grosse Pointe Shores man contacted police March 25 after he received a suspicious package at his home in the 800 block of Michaux Lane.

The resident said the package showed that it was from “Santa Claus” at an address of 123 Lucky Lane, Omaha, Nebraska. He told police he was leery of opening it because it was heavy and made a clinking noise when he shook it.

Police were able to determine from the tracking number that the package was actually shipped from the area of Winston-Salem, North Carolina. The resident told police that he has a friend who lives in that area. He called his friend and discovered that the friend had, in fact, sent the package: It contained an estimated 500 pennies, payment for a bet the resident had recently won against his friend. The resident opened the package and saw that it was, indeed, a box full of pennies.


Neighbors clash over fence
GROSSE POINTE CITY — Around 3:14 p.m. Sept. 25, police were called to the 500 block of Notre Dame Street because a 73-year-old Grosse Pointe City woman was allegedly tearing down her neighbor’s backyard fence board by board.

Police said that when they arrived, the suspect was removing boards with a pry bar and a hammer. There were already an estimated 15 boards stacked in a pile when police got there, and while they ordered the suspect to stop, they said, she continued to take down the fence, removing at least another three boards while they were on the scene.

A police report states that the new fence was being installed within the survey stake parameters. Police said the suspect was told Sept. 24 that she should call the Public Safety Department if any more issues arose. Instead, police said, the suspect “took matters in her own hands” and destroyed part of the fence. The suspect told police she didn’t like the fence her neighbors were installing and she wanted a wooden fence with spaces between the boards to let light through.

Police said contractors working on the fence estimated that the suspect caused $255 worth of materials and labor damage to the fence. The suspect was arrested for malicious destruction of property.


Fake paperwork leads to arrest
GROSSE POINTE SHORES — A police report states that a 24-year-old Grosse Pointe Park man came to the Grosse Pointe Shores Public Safety Department March 1 to get an impound release for his vehicle, a Honda CR-V. He provided the necessary paperwork — driver’s license, registration and proof of insurance — requested by police. There was just one glitch: The proof of insurance showed an effective date of Feb. 29, 2018 — a date that doesn’t exist.

Police called the man’s alleged insurer, AAA, and discovered, as per their suspicions, that the policy was a fake. The man told police he didn’t know the six-month policy was fraudulent, and claimed he had purchased it from an insurance agent in Dearborn for $175, but the man couldn’t give police any additional information about the alleged insurance salesperson.

Police arrested the man, who was facing charges of identity theft and presenting fraudulent insurance documents to a police officer. His vehicle, which was impounded Feb. 28, was seized, and police filed paperwork for “notice of seizure and intent to forfeit.”


Police respond to disorderly wedding guest
GROSSE POINTE FARMS — Police arrested a 37-year-old Dearborn woman after she is said to have gotten intoxicated and unruly at a wedding at The War Memorial around 10:38 p.m. June 16.

According to a police report, officers came to The War Memorial twice that evening because of the suspect. The first time, they said, the suspect was standing in the center driveway. Police said she shouted and cursed at people, including War Memorial staff, slurring her words and swaying on her feet. A manager told police that bartenders had cut off the woman after she had too much to drink, which sent her into a rage during which she shouted, swore, knocked over chairs and uprooted some potted plants.

The suspect was told to leave the premises, but the manager said that while the suspect went outside, she refused to leave the property. The suspect’s father tried unsuccessfully to calm her down, and even he told the manager to call police.

The suspect told police she was waiting for an Uber and she had the right to stay there until it arrived, and she spoke loudly above officers. Police said she was told “in a loud, clear voice to leave and not return,” which prompted her finally to “stomp off down the driveway while cursing and offering a middle finger as she walked away.”

Police stayed on the scene for several minutes, but just as they were returning to the station, they got a call that the disorderly woman had returned and was in the same spot on the driveway again, and she was shouting again.

Police said the suspect resisted arrest, and as she was being transported to a holding cell, she “shouted, cursed and cried” and told police she didn’t intend to return for court. She was facing trespassing charges, police said.


Drunken driver flees from police
GROSSE POINTE CITY — A 43-year-old Grosse Pointe Park woman is facing a charge of operating while intoxicated after she was found to be drunk behind the wheel in the area of East Jefferson Avenue and Washington Road at 4:15 p.m. Oct. 24.

A police report states that the driver hit several construction cones and stopped to investigate the damage to her vehicle, but as police approached with lights and sirens activated, she is said to have gotten back into her Toyota Prius and driven off, swerving from lane to lane before officers were able to get her to stop at Jefferson and Lakeland Street. Police said her front driver’s side tire was flat and the rim was exposed.

She reportedly smelled of alcohol and failed several field sobriety tests, but she refused to take a preliminary breath test, so police had to get a warrant to have her blood drawn at a local hospital. Police arrested the driver for OWI, but they said she refused to get into the patrol vehicle. She resisted arrest as well, but one of the officers on the scene was able to get handcuffs on her and get her into the back of a patrol vehicle.

However, police said that moments later, they saw that the woman had managed to slip off the handcuffs and put them in her pocket. Officers opened the patrol vehicle door and got the handcuffs from her, but they said she resisted efforts to handcuff her a second time. The driver was slurring her words, not making sense and making “repetitive inappropriate sexual comments,” a police report states.

The driver was supposedly en route to pick up her child when she was stopped. At the hospital, police said, the driver continued to make “loud, inappropriate sexual comments to officers, patients including children in the waiting room, and hospital personnel.” She had to be handcuffed to the hospital bed to have her blood drawn because police said she resisted hospital personnel. She was said to have made threatening remarks to police as well.


Driver ends up on golf course
GROSSE POINTE FARMS — Police were called to the Country Club of Detroit at around 8:53 p.m. Oct. 23 after a 79-year-old Grosse Pointe City man somehow drove his vehicle onto the private club’s property and ended up with his rear tires on the green of the sixth hole, his front tires over the left sand trap and his vehicle frame resting on the lip of the bunker.

The driver told police he wasn’t hurt. He said he tried to call his auto insurance company, but he couldn’t tell them where to send a tow truck because he didn’t know where he was. The driver said he had left a Village business and was on his way home, and he didn’t know he was on the golf course, nor did he know how he got there. He told police he suffered from a sleep disorder.

A local towing company was called to the scene by police to remove the man’s vehicle, but that tow truck got stuck backing onto the green, police said. A second towing company was called, and after an assessment of the scene, that company sent a larger tow truck to remove the other tow truck and the car. Police said they called the Grosse Pointe City man’s wife to pick him up.