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Judge grants adjournment of carjacking case

By: Sarah Wojcik | Shelby - Utica News | Published January 12, 2016

 Defense attorney R. Timothy Kohler, left, and defendant Michael Garrett, right, listen to 42-1 District Court Judge Denis LeDuc Jan. 12.

Defense attorney R. Timothy Kohler, left, and defendant Michael Garrett, right, listen to 42-1 District Court Judge Denis LeDuc Jan. 12.

Photo by Deb Jacques

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On Jan. 12, Judge Denis LeDuc, of the 42-1 District Court in Romeo, granted an adjournment of the probable cause conference for a 30-year-old Pontiac man charged with carjacking — a felony carrying a possible life sentence — and assaulting and/or obstructing a police officer.

The suspect’s defense attorney, R. Timothy Kohler, told LeDuc that the defense and the prosecution were in agreement to reschedule Michael Garrett’s preliminary examination for a later date because the key witness was out of state.

Kohler said he received the discovery packet that morning from the Macomb County Prosecutor’s Office and shared the information with his client.

“(We) had discussions (about) what additional evidence is going to come in, in addition to what we’ve provided,” he said. “By way of example, they’ve listed out several items that they’ve taken into custody.”

Because of a schedule conflict and a desire to stay roughly within the 21-day time period, all parties agreed to return to court Jan. 26 — before the key witness returned from out of state.

Kohler explained that, when individuals are arraigned, they are provided a 21-day window to present evidence or witnesses.

“We can start that date with officers (as witnesses),” Kohler said. “If we have to continue, we’ll pick a day, as long as it’s with Mr. Garrett’s consent.”

At approximately 11 a.m. Jan. 2, Garrett allegedly demanded money from a 78-year-old Washington Township man at knifepoint at the Macomb Orchard Trail, near West Road and Van Dyke Avenue. The Washington Township man told police that, because he did not have any money, he handed over his cellphone and the keys to his 2014 Ford F-150 pickup truck.

Police said Garrett loaded a bicycle into the rear of the truck and drove away, dropping his knife as he left. Police said the Washington Township man flagged down a 46-year-old Washington Township woman, who pursued Garrett with the Washington Township man in her vehicle.

They reportedly found Garrett standing outside of the truck, and police said the woman confronted Garrett. He handed over the car keys and phone, grabbed the bicycle out of the truck, and headed for the trail, police said.

After a search that included K-9 and aviation units and a foot chase, a Shelby Township police officer arrested Garrett.

Garrett currently is lodged in the Macomb County Jail. According to the Macomb County Sheriff’s Office, he is a parole absconder from the Oakland-Pontiac Parole Office.

Kohler declined to comment on the case.

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