By Scott Bolthouse
Hub Editor in Chief
Yesterday was a busy day for the Huron Township Police Department, as well as neighboring law enforcement agencies and the Huron Township Fire Department.
According to Police Chief Everette Robbins, On Thursday, August 28, Huron Township Police received two separate calls of home invasions in progress. Both homes were occupied by children while entry into the homes was attempted by the suspects.
The first call, according to Robbins, was made by a 13 year old boy in the 25000 block of Waltz road at 12:54 p.m.
The caller reported that he was home alone and that a male was trying to enter his home by removing the screen of an open window, according to Robbins.
Robbins said Officers were on scene within five minutes but the suspect had already fled and the 13 year old was located safely.
Minutes later, at 12:58 p.m. in the 19000 block of Sterling Street, a 16 year old female and her 7 year old brother called police to report that males were entering their residence by forcing open the front door. One of the officers responding to the Waltz Rd. incident rerouted and arrived at the Sterling St. home within five minutes.
The two children were found safely inside the house hiding in an upstairs closet.
Robbins said that at the time of the Sterling Street home invasion, Huron Firefighters Nate Cornwall and Brad Bauman were monitoring the Huron Township Dispatch radio traffic.
Huron Township has a fire station located on Sterling St., across from the location where the home invasion was occurring.
Both firefighters were able to visually see the scene and provide the police with suspect vehicle information.
Robbins said a short time later, Huron Township Officers were flagged down by a citizen who observed the same vehicle that the firefighters witnessed, picking up a suspect near the Waltz Rd. incident a short time later.
Huron Officers, with the assistance of the Downriver Area Narcotic Operation (DRANO), continued the investigation into the early morning hours of August 29, Robbins said. The investigation took law enforcement to Southwest Detroit, where a 28 year old Detroit resident was taken into custody on Home Invasion First Degree.
Robbins said the suspect’s vehicle was recovered along with property believed to be taken during the home invasions.
“We cannot connect them to the other recent home invasions for certain,” said Robbins.
“They are similar in nature and the investigation will continue.”
Robbins said that he had never experienced anything like this before, where two home invasions were happening simultaneously.
“This was another example of community partners coming together and getting the job done. The relationship between the Huron Township Fire Department and the police department was vital to this arrest,” said Robbins.
“Without the firefighters diligence at the onset of this investigation, we would not be where we are in this investigation.”
Robbins also noted that getting information out about these recent homes invasions has helped to create an informed community.
“The resident that flagged us down knew about the recent home invasions and was alert to his surroundings,” said Robbins.
Chief Robbins also commented on the composure of the children and teens who were in the homes while these crimes took place.
“The most important factor in this case is the way that these young victims’s handled themselves during a situation that most adults would have folded,” he explained.
“They did not confront the suspects and were able to stay on the phone with our dispatch staff, stay calm, and provide helpful information. At the end of the day they did what it took to stay safe and they are the real heroes,” he said.
“Today is a proud day for me and this department,” he noted.
“To see the pride on the faces of our officers last night as all of this came together was something I wish the public could see on a daily basis. Almost every officer and dispatcher was involved in this investigation in some way and came through under tough circumstances. I thank each of them for the work they do every day.”
The Huron Township Police Department has requested the assistance of federal, state and Western Wayne County agencies to assist in taking a proactive approach in investigating these crimes.
Anyone with information in regards to these crime should contact the Huron Township Police at 734-753-4400.
Check back with The Huron Hub for future updates to this story.