Updated 9.30.11. The arrests of four teens were announced Thursday in two criminal cases, one in Detroit and the other in the suburb of Southfield. All four are minors, 14-16 years of age. The conduct underlying the police action is as follows:
Vandalism of Miracle Field- Southfield police announced yesterday that two teens, both 15, one from Detroit, were arrested for trashing a baseball diamond with spray-painted graffiti. The vandalism was done on May 21.
The perps probably did not realize how costly the damage was, even if they cared. Miracle Field was designed and built to accomodate special needs kids, some of whom use wheelchairs or crutches for mobility. To aid movement the entire playing surface was made of rubber. It wasn’t cheap, and the damage done by the spray paint will cost an estimated $60,000 to remediate.
The investigation into the offense was spinning its wheels and may not have reached a solution but for two things: a different crime and some helpful citizens.
Southfield cops were investigating the theft of backpacks at a municipal tennis court during August, and the evidence pointed to the two teens as being the thieves.
During witness interviews in the larceny case, the Miracle Field vandalism started coming up. Information volunteered by citizens is credited with breaking the case. The police now had new leads in the vandalism matter, and crucial new evidence. When the evidence rose to the level of probable cause, the police arrested the 15-year-olds.
The teens are expected to be charged with malicious destruction of property. That crime may be a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on whether it meets certain criteria. One is whether the property damage is over $20,000; it is, and that makes this crime a 10 year felony.
The pair will also be charged with two counts of larceny in the Southfield Municipal Complex theft case. Both have been released to their parents pending further proceedings.
Assault on teacher at Osborn High School- A teacher at a Detroit public school called 911 shortly after 12:30 PM Thursday to report an assault in which he was the victim.
In a story broken by WXYZ-7, the teacher told responding DPD officers that was struck in the back with a stapler, had staples shot at him, and was pushed or punched about the chest several times. The assault took place at Osborn High School, a DPS component. The DPS police have taken over the investigation.
Two students, 14 and 16, were arrested. The younger teen was released to his parents. The older teen, who is on probation for carrying a gun, is in juvenile jail.
DPS Police Chief Roderick Grimes expressed hope that the arrests will deter other students from what he called “negative behavior.”