Suspect in sexual assault and home invasion cases in Pointes headed to trial

By: K. Michelle Moran | Grosse Pointe Times | Published January 2, 2018

 Defense attorney Christine Grand appears in Grosse Pointe Farms Municipal Court Oct. 18 on behalf of her client, Gerald Day, seated, for a probable cause hearing. Flanking Day are Grosse Pointe Farms Detective Bryan Ford and, at right, Farms Detective Lt. Richard Rosati.

Defense attorney Christine Grand appears in Grosse Pointe Farms Municipal Court Oct. 18 on behalf of her client, Gerald Day, seated, for a probable cause hearing. Flanking Day are Grosse Pointe Farms Detective Bryan Ford and, at right, Farms Detective Lt. Richard Rosati.

File photo by K. Michelle Moran

GROSSE POINTES/DETROIT — A manhunt for an alleged home invader in Grosse Pointe Farms led to the arrest of a suspect now facing a wide array of serious charges in the Pointes and Detroit, including sexual assault and being a felon in possession of a firearm.

Gerald Day, 28, of Detroit, was arrested after a nearly six-hour manhunt that started after he reportedly tried to break into a Grosse Pointe Farms home in the 400 block of Lothrop Road through a window before 5 a.m. April 23. Farms Public Safety Director Daniel Jensen said two K-9 tracking dogs from Macomb County and an estimated 20 to 25 officers from the Farms and mutual aid partners Grosse Pointe City, Grosse Pointe Park, Grosse Pointe Woods and Harper Woods set up a quadrant and searched the area from Fisher to Cloverly roads, and from Chalfonte to Mack avenues.

After police were unable to locate the suspect following the first couple of hours, Jensen said, most of the mutual aid partners were sent back to their departments while Farms officers continued to comb the neighborhoods, checking backyards and looking underneath parked vehicles. He said given the large number of police in the area and the fact that they had surrounded the neighborhood, police were confident that the suspect hadn’t been able to get away.

Jensen was right, and police did end up arresting Day April 23 in a backyard in the 400 block of Madison Road, following a foot pursuit. Police said Day broke into a home in the 400 block of Madison as well.

Day is facing charges of first- and second-degree criminal sexual conduct, first-degree home invasion, assault with intent to commit armed robbery, felon in possession of a weapon and felony firearm after prosecutors said he broke into the home of a 37-year-old Grosse Pointe Woods woman around 6:30 a.m. April 15 and sexually assaulted her at gunpoint before asking her where her valuables were located. He was arraigned this summer on these charges.

In a press release issued June 8 by the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office, Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy said, “Thanks to the hard work of the Grosse Pointe Woods Public Safety Department working in conjunction with other police departments and my office, this alleged dangerous predator will now face very serious criminal charges.”

In Grosse Pointe City, Day was alleged to have broken into a home in the 700 block of Washington Road around 5:15 a.m. April 22 with the intent of sexually assaulting a 12-year-old girl at that home. Police and prosecutors said Day attempted to restrain the girl with a weapon, but a father and two minors were in the home at the same time, and one of the minors heard Day and alerted the father. Allegedly Day fled the scene as a result, police said.

Although charges against Day were dropped in the City after the victim declined to testify, Day is still facing multiple charges in several other cities. Police said charges in the City could be reinstated in the future, should the victim decide to testify.

Day’s court-appointed defense attorney, Christine Grand, has argued that the cases against Day consist of largely circumstantial evidence, but police and prosecutors are certain they’ve got the right guy. They also argue that Day is a threat to society.

Farms Detective Lt. Richard Rosati said Day is “not your typical home invader.”

“He was not looking to steal property,” Rosati said in October of Day’s alleged home invasions. “He was looking to assault females in their home.”

Grosse Pointe City Municipal Judge Russell Ethridge decided, based on the severity of the allegations, not to set a bond for Day.

Rosati said Day “seems to be more sociopathic,” because he demonstrates “no compassion and no remorse” for the crimes he’s allegedly committed.

“In 32 years of police work, I’ve dealt with tons of criminals, but very few like him,” Rosati said. “This guy sends chills down your spine when you talk to him.”

During an October hearing in Grosse Pointe City Municipal Court in October, Melissa Palepu, a Wayne County assistant prosecuting attorney, said that Day has prior convictions and a juvenile criminal history. In the past 15 years, Palepu told the court, Day has been convicted of receiving and concealing a stolen vehicle, armed robbery and conspiracy to commit armed robbery.

The various charges against Day are slated to be heard simultaneously in 3rd Circuit Court in Detroit in front of Judge Sean Cox. Day is facing multiple charges of first-degree home invasion, as well as first- and second-degree criminal sexual conduct, domestic violence, unlawful imprisonment, felony firearm and felon in possession of a firearm, among other charges. Several of the charges Day is facing — including habitual fourth offender — could result in him spending the rest of his life in prison if he’s convicted. At press time, a final conference before Day goes on trial was slated for Feb. 2 in 3rd Circuit Court.