After a preliminary exam on Sept. 5, 34th District Court Judge Brian A. Oakley bound Theron John Hunter, 40, of Van Buren Township over to circuit court for trial. Hunter is due at the Frank Murphy Hall of Justice in Detroit at 9 a.m. Sept. 19.
Hunter is charged with carrying a concealed weapon, controlled substances (heroin less than 25 grams), possession of firearm by a felon, weapons felony firearm, and weapons felony firearm – second offense.
The only witness called by the prosecution was Sgt. Alex Schultz of the Van Buren Township Police Department, who said he was the nighttime shift supervisor on Nov. 15-16, 2016, when the case began.
He said police were informed when they came on board at 6 p.m. that a person had called dispatch to report that a female had been pushed into a vehicle which left the trailer park at the north end of the township.
Sgt. Schultz said he alerted the officers to make checks to see if they can locate the vehicle and check the woman’s welfare since it could be a possible kidnapping. The information was turned over to the detective bureau, he said.
He said at around 2:30 a.m. on Nov. 16 he stopped a car matching the description of the vehicle they were looking for – a silver SUV with a black male driving – which accelerated to a high rate of speed after he turned on his lights to make the traffic stop.
He said he told the driver, identified as Theron Hunter, that he was investigating an alleged domestic dispute. Hunter said he lived in the trailer park with his girlfriend, Sgt. Schultz testified. Hunter gave his driver’s license to the officer, who ran it through the law enforcement information network (LEIN) that showed there was a valid felony warrant for Hunter out of Washtnenaw County. He put Hunter in the back of his patrol car.
Sgt. Schultz said he then did a vehicle inventory check and found a fully loaded handgun with a bullet in the chamber under the front passenger seat, within arm’s reach. He testified he also found a Dunkin’ Donuts cup with a lid on it, with a baggie of suspected narcotics inside. It later tested to be heroin.
Under cross-examination by Hunter’s court-appointed attorney, Sgt. Schultz testified that he stopped the car because it matched the description of the car he was seeking and the driver was a black male, as described by the caller.
He said after he made a U-turn to follow the car, it headed toward Washtenaw County on Michigan Avenue. He said he had to drive more than 100 mph to stop the car which he did just over the Washtenaw County line.
Hunter is free after posting bond of $10,000/10%.
John Phillip Fisher
John Phillip Fisher, 80, had his preliminary exam set for Sept. 19 before Judge David Parrott. Fisher is charged with seven felony charges of criminal sexual conduct: one count of CSC 1st degree (person less than 13 years, defendant at least 17), two counts of CSC 2nd degree (penetration – person under 13, defendant 17 years or older), two counts of CSC 2nd degree (relationship), and two counts of CSC 4th degree (incest) in Van Buren Township on Jan. 1, 2008.
If he is found guilty he could be punished by any number of years in prison up to life.
His bond had been set at $50,000/10%, and was posted. He is free on a tether and appeared in the courtroom on a walker. The prosecutor and defense attorney Pamela Tracy stipulated to his competency.
Steven Cole Stickler
On Sept. 5, a felony domestic violence charge against Steven Cole Stickler, 38, was dismissed by Judge Oakley at the request of the prosecutor. He had been free after posting bond of $10,000/10%.
Stickler’s charge was brought after an incident in Van Buren Township on Aug. 16.
Darrell Wayne Veres
The preliminary exam for Darrell Wayne Veres, 51, on a charge of home invasion-1st degree was delayed again until he is out of treatment at the Walter Reuther facility. The incident for which he was charged occurred on Dec. 13 in Van Buren Township. His attorney Ricky Nelson was present in the courtroom for a review of the case.
He is being held on $25,000 cash bond.