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Man arrested for alleged threatening calls to Warren police

By: Brian Louwers | Warren Weekly | Published February 14, 2020

WARREN — A man from the Muskegon area was jailed with bail set at $15,000 Feb. 10 after he allegedly called the Warren Police Department dozens of times over the span of a week and left threatening messages about a patrol officer.

According to Derek Miller, the chief of operations in Macomb County Prosecuting Attorney Eric Smith’s office, the man apparently became angered after watching an online video showing Warren police officers interacting with another man outside the U.S. Army Detroit Arsenal property on 11 Mile Road, east of Mound Road. The man on the video was apparently using a camera outside the fenced and gated property when he was questioned by officers.  

“He (the arrested suspect) saw this YouTube video and was very upset that this individual, he felt his First Amendment rights were violated, and he proceeded to contact the Warren Police Department, asking to speak with the officer who was in the video,” Miller said.

The man allegedly called the Warren Police Department more than 45 times between Jan. 28 and Feb. 23 and allegedly left threatening messages about a female officer in the video.

“He just called and basically peppered the department with phone calls, saying obscene things about this officer, saying he was going to murder her, that she couldn’t outrun his bullets, that he was going to rape her,” Miller said.

Police were able to confirm the man’s identity and location through a Google account linked to an app used to make the calls.

Warren Police Lt. John Barnes said detectives traveled to Muskegon Feb. 7, where they arrested the 37-year-old man with the assistance of local police. Miller said investigators executed a search warrant and discovered a laptop computer that was burnt in a garbage can.

The man was arraigned in the 37th District Court on Feb. 10 on the charge of malicious use of a telecommunications device, a misdemeanor punishable by up to six months in jail. He requested a court-appointed attorney and remained jailed at press time.

“I think the message is in today’s day and age, we need to remain vigilant when it comes to threats against our law enforcement,” Miller said. “We can’t take any threat lightly.”