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Trespasser arrested in bookstore, drunk driver on Fountain Street, and multiple hit and runs – GRCC Police Reports

GRCC Police Department. (Alena Visnovsky/The Collegiate)

By James Herold

Hit and run in Ramp A clarified by security cameras

On Sept. 7, at 11:56 a.m., Grand Rapids Community College Police were driving on level five in Ramp A when they were flagged down by a man. 

The man told the officers that when he was attempting to leave the parking ramp, a vehicle in front of him backed into his vehicle, striking his front bumper. The man said the driver was attempting to swipe their RaiderCard at the gate but was unsuccessful and proceeded to back up despite the man honking. The woman who was backing up, failed to stop. She said, “I’m sorry” and drove off. 

The woman has a gray SUV and is white with red hair. The incident happened between 11:45 a.m. and 11:50 a.m. 

GRCC police contacted Ellis Parking Manager Sue Ross, to review the cameras. After reviewing the cameras, the incident appeared to have happened at 11:46 a.m. In a video taken by police, the woman’s car was a Mazda CX-5 bearing Michigan registration. When backing up, she hit the man’s front bumper near the passenger side and she took off. 

Additional information on the woman was added on Sept. 8. She is a GRCC student and had a class on campus on Sept. 7. When police tried to call her, she would not pick up. Officers left a voicemail. She called back and admitted to hitting the vehicle and stated that she had insufficient funds on her RaiderCard and was not able to leave. When she backed up, she thought she hit a curb. She said she got out of her vehicle and saw no damage. She said the driver of the other vehicle did not confront her. She was advised to remain on scene next time and call the police. She was not given a citation or referred to Student Conduct. 

Hit and run in Ramp A reported six days after it supposedly occurred

The same day, Sept. 7 at 1:50 p.m., GRCC police were dispatched to a property damage accident (PDA) in Ramp A on level six. The caller was waiting at the front desk to file a report. Before getting her statement, officers transported the caller back to her vehicle in Ramp A. 

Once police got to her vehicle, the woman said her vehicle, which was a Land Rover Defender with Michigan registration, was struck by another vehicle while in the ramp. She said the incident occurred on Sept. 1 between 8:15 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. She parked her vehicle on level six of Ramp A, all the way to the far southeast corner of the ramp. She was unable to provide a description of the vehicle that hit her due to it being gone, but was able to say the vehicle was possibly red. The woman said her vehicle was hit on the driver’s side rear passenger wheel well but the car was still functional. 

False alarm in Ford Fieldhouse elevator

On Sept. 8, at 1:13 a.m., a GRCC police officer was contacted by the Grand Rapids Police Department via the call duty pager. GRPD said that the 911 help button was pushed in the elevator at Ford Fieldhouse. GRPD also said they did not get a response after being called by the elevator. 

The GRCC police officer called dispatch when arriving on scene. The officer checked both elevators in the Fieldhouse. Both were in working order and no one was stuck inside. The officer tried looking for a GRCC employee but couldn’t find one. The officer called dispatch and cleared the incident. Case closed. 

Repeat trespassing offender arrested at GRCC bookstore

On Sept. 9, at 12:49 p.m., GRCC police were dispatched regarding a complaint of a shirtless man in the GRCC bookstore. The complainant said that they were worried that he was going to steal items from the store. 

Upon arrival, officers saw the man standing at a store register without a shirt on. When he looked in the officer’s direction, police immediately recognized him. GRCC PD has had numerous contacts with him in the past. The officer told him to step away from the register and talk to him. When asked what was going on, the man said he needed a shirt and the one he had on was bothering him. At this time, another officer arrived to assist.

The man was told to turn around and place his hands behind his back. He was put in handcuffs and was told he was under arrest for trespassing. The man said he knows he is not supposed to be at GRCC and that the only reason he was on campus was because he needed a new shirt. 

He was escorted out to the patrol vehicle. The officer returned to the bookstore and spoke with employees. They said that he walked into the bookstore with a GRCC student life shirt on. The officer went to the Student Life office and spoke with the staff there. They said that they gave him that shirt because he went into their office without a shirt on and was asking for a shirt. Apparently the shirt that was given to him by Student Life was the shirt bothering him. After he was arrested, the man was asked if he wanted to keep the shirt, he said no. 

He was transported and logged at the Kent County Correctional Facility (KCCF) for trespassing and was given a trespassing citation. 

Previous contacts with this man are listed below:

1-18-22- Trespass warning 

2-22-22- Trespass citation

3-2-22- Trespass warrant requested 

4-4-22- Arrested for trespassing 

4-20-22- Arrested for trespassing 

On Sept. 12, GRCC police took the citation and the copy of the report to the city’s attorney’s office. City of Grand Rapids Attorney Matt Kroll reviewed and signed off on the citation. The citation and report were then brought to the court office for processing. 

Miscommunication about broken down white SUV needing to be towed

On Sept. 12  at 8:26 a.m., GRCC police saw a white Chevy Equinox parked in the corner of the M-Tec parking lot. The car was parked in the same spot since Sept. 6. The vehicle was not moved. A note was left on the dash stating that the vehicle was broken down and needed to be towed. The note said it would be towed that night. 

The vehicle identification number (VIN) came back to a woman. Officers contacted her via text. She said her son drives that vehicle. She said she was aware it broke down in the lot but thought her son had it removed by now. She said that she would reach out to her son and get back to the officer when she knows what her son’s plans are to remove the vehicle.

Another hit and run in Ramp A 

On Sept. 13 at approximately 4 p.m., GRCC police were dispatched to a hit and run property damage accident that occurred in GRCC’s Ramp A. The victim, a GRCC student, met with the officer on level five of Ramp A.

The student said that she parked her vehicle at approximately 9:30 a.m. on Sept. 13 and returned to find it damaged at approximately 3:55 p.m. There was damage to the rear driver side panel and bumper. 

No cars in the area had damage from the vehicle. 

Suspicious one way driver 

On Sept. 13, at approximately 8:38 p.m., while on patrol at GRCC’s main campus and driving southbound on Ransom Ave NE, GRCC police observed a gray Chevy Equinox heading northbound on Ransom Ave NE. The driver then turned westbound on Fountain St NE which is a one-way street that is eastbound only. 

A traffic stop was done on the vehicle at 8:38 p.m. due to it driving the wrong way. When approaching the vehicle, the driver handed his license and registration over without being asked. He did not answer the question on whether he knew he was driving down a one way street, instead he stated Ransom Street. He was informed that he was on Fountain Street. The man apologized. When asked if he had been drinking, he said yes and apologized again. He said he had three or four whiskeys. Backup was called. The vehicle is a 2021 Chevy Equinox. 

The driver was told to step out of his vehicle and GRCC officers supervised standard field sobriety tests (SFST) which began at 8:45 p.m. The man had no glasses, contacts, and also no injuries that would make the tests hard for him. He was wearing a gray t-shirt, pants, and black shoes. He was taken to flat ground to perform the tests. 

The officer described many tests including the suspect being arrested for OWI, and recieving a chemical test. 

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