Michigan State Police are launching the second phase of oral roadside drug testing pilot program starting Tuesday.
Under the pilot program, a drug recognition expert (DRE) may require a person to submit to a preliminary oral fluid analysis to detect the presence of a controlled substance in the person’s body if they suspect the driver is impaired by drugs.
DREs are police officers who have received specified training that allows them to identify drivers impaired by drugs. Although the pilot program is being organized and managed by the MSP, DREs employed by county, township and municipal police agencies are also involved.
The preliminary oral fluid analysis will be conducted by a DRE on the person’s oral fluid, obtained by mouth swab, and will be administered along with the drug recognition 12-step evaluation currently used by DREs.
The oral fluid test instrument tests for the presence of the following drugs: amphetamines, benzodiazepines, cannabis (delta 9 THC), cocaine, methamphetamines and opiates.
“This additional, statewide data will help to determine the usefulness of this tool for law enforcement, as we work to get drug-impaired drivers off Michigan’s roads,” said Lt. Col. Richard Arnold, commander of MSP’s Field Operations Bureau. “Roadside oral fluid testing continues to show promise and by expanding this pilot, we’ll have a larger body of results by which to determine the tool’s effectiveness.”
MSP conducted a one-year oral fluid roadside analysis pilot program which concluded in November 2018, in five counties – Berrien, Delta, Kent, St. Clair and Washtenaw.
The initial pilot provided data on the performance of the oral fluid test instrument when coupled with law enforcement observed driver behavior and standardized field sobriety tests, but the overall sample size was too small to draw any definitive conclusions on the tool’s usefulness for law enforcement.
Refusal to submit to a preliminary oral fluid analysis upon lawful demand of a police officer is a civil infraction, according to MSP.
Over the last several years, Michigan has seen a steady increase in fatal crashes involving drivers impaired by drugs, according to MSP.
In 2018, there were 247 drug-involved traffic fatalities.
A condo caught fire Monday evening in the Huron Park condominiums near Middle Belt and Van Horn Roads in Huron Township. According to authorities, a fire department command unit arrived within three minutes of the 911 call, and a ladder truck arrived within 12 minutes. (Photos courtesy of Everette Robbins)
No one was injured Monday evening when a condo caught fire at Huron Park condominiums near Middle Belt and Van Horn Roads in Huron Township.
The cause of the fire remains under investigation Tuesday morning, but it appears that the fire was accidental and no foul play was involved, according to Everette Robbins, director of public safety.
Robbins said the fire department did an “incredible job,” and that they were able to isolate the fire to the one condominium, saving several other condos in the community from receiving damage.
In a sign of the times, Robbins dispelled several rumors that circulated on social media in the hours after regarding the fire department’s response.
“We had a firefighter command officer on scene within three minutes of the call. That unit arrived and immediately checked for occupants in the house and began preparing the scene for extra units,” Robbins said.
According to a statistics document that Robbins shared, the command unit, who was stationed near Huron High School, received the call at 7:02 p.m. and arrived on scene at 7:05 p.m.
12 minutes after the initial call, the fire department’s ladder truck arrived to provide assistance.
This was the first time the ladder truck was used at a structure fire after the department purchased the truck last winter.
Safety drills are planned Thursday at both elementary schools in the Huron District.
Here is more information from the Huron School District:
Good Afternoon Huron Parents and Families,
Tomorrow, September 26, 2019, the Huron School District will be conducting a practice safety drill at Brown Elementary School and Miller Elementary School. We have coordinated with the Huron Township Police Department and our safety and security consultants, Compliance One Group, in order to plan a practice drill for staff, students and law enforcement. We have carefully structured the drill with small children in mind in order to allow our staff to practice safety procedures and protocols in a non-frightening way. Police officials will be on hand as part of the drills structure and to support school personnel as they conduct the drill. In addition to practicing our protocols and procedures, we will also be practicing our communication efforts by sending out email blast communications before, during and after the safety drill for each building.
Thank you for your support and feel free to contact Mr. Rowe, Superintendent, with any questions you may have.
Posted by The Huron Hub on Tuesday, Sept. 17, 2019
The city of Romulus announced last week that it has reached an agreement to reaffirm the city as home to the 34th District Court, and outline agreed-upon terms. The agreement, reached with the support of the Michigan State Court Administrators Office, replaces the 1998 Agreement between Romulus, the Township of Sumpter, the Charter Township of Van Buren, the Charter Township of Huron and Belleville.
The 2019 agreement settles misinterpretations of the prior agreement’s wording with regard to disbursement of funds, protects the communities against future misreading, and affirms the court will continue to be located in Romulus.
Meanwhile, construction continues on the new court building funded through fees assessed through the users of the 34th District Court, located at the city’s municipal campus on Wayne Road. The grand opening is slated for early 2020.
“The city of Romulus is proud to have brought our neighboring communities together to review this important issue, maintain good faith and to continue to host the 34th District Court,” Mayor LeRoy Burcroff said. “Having long understood and honored the spirit of the agreement, we are grateful to have cemented its intent in an official contract approved by all the neighboring communities. We are pleased with this agreement. This agreement puts to rest any question raised that the City of Romulus acted inappropriately and puts into writing changes implemented by the court, and how such court fees will continue to be administered and disbursed to the communities.”
Prior to reaching the new agreement, the city of Romulus conducted all financial transactions in accordance with the 1998 agreement. The city also received the highest, unqualified audit opinion in an outside audit conducted by Plante Moran in 2018.
“The recent signing of the updated 34th District Court Funding Unit Agreement is the latest example of how the five communities that make up this unit continue to work together for a common purpose,” said David A. Glaab, Huron Charter Township Supervisor. “Building on their positive relationships based on mutual trust and respect, the judges, mayors and township supervisors maintained open lines of communication and forged an agreement that will benefit the communities and their court well into the future. This agreement demonstrates what effective leadership and political subdivisions working together as an equal partnership can achieve.”
A 76-year-old Huron Township man is dead Wednesday after firefighters and police initially responded to a structure fire in the 21000 block of Huron River Drive to find a house barricaded from within and fire accelerant spread throughout the inside.
At 5:21 p.m., Huron Township Dispatch Operations Center received a 911 call from a neighbor reporting a structure fire at the location.
The neighbor told 911 that they could see smoke coming from inside the house.
Huron Township Fire Department and police responded to the scene within four minutes and firefighters were able to extinguish multiple fires in the house and garage areas.
After entering the house, emergency responders observed a large amount of fresh fire accelerant spread throughout the inside, as well as several weapons and doors to the house barricade from within.
“Once inside the residence and after observing several indicators of obstacles that could potentially be dangerous to our staff, a decision was made to have our first responders take tactical positions. This decision was made not only to ensure their safety, but also the safety of nearby neighbors. Our top priority was to make sure everyone remained safe,” said Everette Robbins, Huron Township director of public safety.
Officers then setup a perimeter around the house and neighbors were asked to shelter in place.
Huron River Drive was closed between King and West Roads, and multiple Huron Township police and fire staff were contacted while off duty and responded to the scene to assist.
DTE was also contacted and shut down service in the immediate area.
“The teamwork that occurred throughout this emergency situation was incredible. Our Dispatch Staff, Firefighters and Police Officers unselfishly responded to the scene while they were off duty. All hands were on deck and both of our public safety departments were all in to ensure the safety of our residents,” Robbins said.
Because of the accelerants spread throughout the house and the possibility of an armed barricaded person inside, the Michigan State Police Bomb Squad and SWAT team were contacted and assisted during the incident.
For several hours, the bomb squad robots examined the house in an attempt to identify any potential threats inside.
“I am very appreciative for the assistance of the Michigan State Police. They responded with two robots to assist us with assessing the threat level inside the residence. The robots were beneficial to limit the human interaction with potential threats and ensure that our first responders make it home safely. The work of these robots ultimately gave us the confidence that we could enter the home safely and resolve this incident,” Robbins said.
At about 12:30 a.m., Huron Township Police and MSP SWAT made entry into the house in an attempt to locate the resident.
Shortly after, he was found dead from what police say initially appears to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Video: Huron Township Police and Michigan State Police SWAT make entry into house
“Our thoughts and prayers go out this this man’s family. I am not sure we will ever know the deceased’s individual’s true intentions or reasoning for this incident,” Robbins said.
The Detective Bureau, Evidence Tech Team, and Huron Township Arson Investigator then conducted an investigation at the scene.
Multiple weapons and fire accelerants were located inside the house.
“It initially appears that the man set the fires himself,” Robbins said.
The investigation is ongoing and the man is not being identified at this time pending the notification of out of town family members.
His body was turned over to the Wayne County Medical Examiner’s Office for an autopsy.
“This incident could have had a much different outcome. We are very fortunate to have such dedicated and well-trained Dispatch, Fire and Police Departments. At the end of the day, we only had a couple officers sustain minor injuries. Again, I am proud of both the teamwork and leadership that I witnessed. This teamwork includes the residents who were displaced from their homes. We appreciated the patience showed by the neighbors affected by this incident and the confidence the community had in us to bring this to a safe conclusion,” said Robbins.
There is a police situation ongoing on Huron River Drive between West and King Roads.
Public Safety Director Everette Robbins said Tuesday evening that officers are still assessing the situation.
“At this point it is still a fluid situation. We are still assessing what we have and have the scene contained for the time being. We ask that residents shelter in place until we have a resolution,” he said.
As of 10:45 p.m. Tuesday, Robbins said they have not made contact with anyone inside the house that is involved in the incident.
“We’ve had no contact with anyone inside at this point,” he said.
Huron River Drive is closed to all traffic in the general area of the incident, and police are asking the public avoid the area until the situation is resolved.