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Man Accused of Robbing Two Girls At Gunpoint in Grosse Pointe City

Police are searching for a man accused of armed robbery and assault of two Grosse Pointe girls Sunday.

Grosse Pointe police said a man assaulted and robbed at gunpoint two sisters, ages 14 and 11, near the intersection of Charlevoix and Lakeland on Sunday.

Police are still searching for the man.

At approximately 11:30 a.m. Sunday morning near the intersection of Charlevoix and Lakeland, the girls saw a black man in his twenties approaching them and thought he was out for a walk. The man shoved one of the girls to the ground and displayed a handgun. He wrestled one of the girls’ cell phone away from her and ran north on Lakeland through residents’ yards.

The suspect had altercations with other people during his escape when he pointed his gun at two residents and their dog, according to Stephen Poloni, Grosse Pointe Director of Public Safety.

The girls screamed for help and nearby residents called police. Grosse Pointe police responded and were assisted by neighboring police departments in creating a perimeter but the suspect has not been found. He was last seen heading west through a resident’s yard on Lakeland, according to police.

“The girls are obviously shaken but both are fine,” Poloni said.

The suspect is described as a black male in his 20s. He is approximately 6 feet tall and weighs between 230–250 pounds. He was wearing black jeans and a black hooded sweatshirt.

If you have any information about this case, please call the City of Grosse Pointe Public Safety Office at 313-886-3200.

Chris K September 18, 2012 at 01:50 AM
Bradley: I think our tax dollars fund a lot more than public safety and most residents just think they need all the services they get without prioritizing spending. I don't know whether public safety has been cut or not, but I know most residents aren't paying attention to how their tax dollars are spent - I don't know of a Grosse Pointe, save for possibly Grosse Pointe Shores, where citizen input and participation on the state of the community, its priorities and its spending is encouraged. That has to stop. I don't think the city leaders care what we say on Patch. Residents will need to get organized to be heard. I know you are reading Patch, as am I, and repeatedly we, the residents, are being warned to lock our doors, our windows, etc. Neighborhood Watch programs just make people more aware of what to look for...not to replace public safety officers but to assist them in doing their jobs. Please note that the Harper Woods Nixle about increasing car thefts says residents need to look out for their neighbors. I think we need to do it a bit more actively here and given the value of the Pointe's is its sense of community we should use it to our advantage, let's not let outsiders disrupt our way of life but by the same token let's make sure our leaders are accountable to take the steps needed to keep our community safe. In the mean time, enter the phone numbers of EACH public safety department in your cell phone and USE them when you see something unusual.
DDPIII September 18, 2012 at 04:01 AM
They wrecked East English Village, they wrecked Harper Woods, and they are coming fast and furious. Why? They arent scared, they know where to get something for nothing. Don't believe me ? Lookie here liberals, cheapskates (pete waldmeirs) http://www.myfoxdetroit.com/story/19488298/harper-woods-facing-serious-increase-in-crime Over 2,000 arrests in just 2.6 square miles this year! And that's just the ones they could catch! We need more GP police presence, more organization amongst citizens. I'd like to post statistics for the Detroit area a block across Mack where this "gentleman" likely came from, but I'd grow a long grey beard waiting for those stats . The bottom line is this: We need to take care of our residents, our property values, and we need to spend our tax money wisely, perhaps even increase it.. Outsiders are coming across Mack in droves to commit crimes here. This is not a drill, this is reality, we need to stand up now. The crime reports you read nowadays were never written in years past.
kwame kilpatrick September 18, 2012 at 07:01 AM
When the avg. officer cost the city $75-150 per hr with benefits, the cities cut patrol oficers! State Police are $150-220 per hr, hence the reason you hardly ever see them anymore !!!!!
Love the Pointe's September 18, 2012 at 11:31 AM
After reading the patch article and reading these comments, I attended last nights Grosse Pointe city council meeting. The parents of the victims were also in attendance and they brought up the Nixle alert issue. The Chief admitted that they did not get the alert on in a timely fashion, however, he went on to explain the circumstances around the issue. He reported to the council that at the time of the robbery and the 911 calls that every officer in the city was on a run. Two officers were in Grosse Pointe Park transporting a prisoner because their cells were full, one officer was assisting on an ambulace run, another officer was at Beaumont Hospital with a felony suspect and a assault victim. He went on to state that one officer was pulled off the ambulance run to go to robbery and that all the other departments were called to assist and he was very complimentary of their response and how the mutual aid system worked efficiently. He also informed the audience that they have been using Nixle for a couple of months, since he came to the City and that the officer who puts the posts on Nixle, unfortunately was the canine officer who was being utilized to search for the suspect. After hearing the details, I felt that at least this was reasonable, however, it was a little sobering to hear of what kind of crime occurred on Sunday. The Chief also reported on the large jewelry theft and that the detectives and his entire department did a good job in making arrests in that crime.
Katie September 18, 2012 at 12:51 PM
There remains a mentality among SOME city administrators and councilmembers in more than one Pointe, that the Pointe’s are unaffected by unpleasantness - that the GP image must be maintained to keep up property values and the social status that defines (some people’s) sense of worth. Maybe it’s time to relieve these people the burden of maintaining the charade and put in place people who live in the real world, in 2012, who can effectively run and manage our communities and resources.
Erwin M. Fletcher September 18, 2012 at 12:54 PM
It's time to wake up people. Surely as rats jump off a sinking ship, the residents of Detroit are bailing on thier city. The leafy neighborhoods of GP make an all too inviting nest. We need to give our police forces the resources they need to combat this horde. It may result in tax increases, which no one wants, but it surely beats the alternative of seeing GP slowly turn into Harper Hoods. We still have the economic means here to make a difference and save our beloved Pointes before it's too late. Let's start doing somethnig about it.
Bradley Coopersmith September 18, 2012 at 01:35 PM
Don't worry, an officer was sitting as he does every morning at Helen and Vernier on the Northside of Vernier waiting to write speeding tickets to everyone on there way to work. ****We are not concerned about who is leaving GP, it is the people that are coming in. At a minimum, switch sides.**** Thank you
49-year resident September 18, 2012 at 02:02 PM
A 6'3", 230 lb, black man in a hoody does not stand out in Grosse Pointe, anymore. Something is happening, and it is increasing exponentially.
Bradley Coopersmith September 18, 2012 at 03:17 PM
I saw this police report posted in the Detroit News: http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20120917/METRO01/209170458/1361/2-Grosse-Pointe-girls-robbed-at-gunpoint. They left out the race of the attacker. This makes me mad only because i don't want people playing games with our safety over social sensitivity issues. Call it like it is and tell people who they need to look out for. We can't even protect ourselves if we are not properly informed. Push for an anti-sagging law - it will keep thugs and bums off our streets.
Todd September 18, 2012 at 03:28 PM
Concerned resident. It was 1 block from Cadieux and Mack. Just like my post said. Maps are cool.
Todd September 18, 2012 at 03:51 PM
I live 2 blocks from GPF police department on a main thoroughfare. In the 5 years we have owned our house, (anecdotal evidence) there is significantly less police traffic than when we moved in. Kerby School does not have an officer hanging around during the morning rush. I drive my kid to nursery school up by Mack and Vernier and watch the parade of cars from the West stopped all along mack letting packs of kids out to walk into the neighborhoods. I pass Mack and Vernier to see NO patrol cars. Except for our buddy that gets GP taxpayers going to work. (Weak) In my opinion... the Woods PD and the Farms PD needs to be on high alert during the school rush. They are not visible at all. That is unacceptable.
Ken Eatherly September 18, 2012 at 04:07 PM
In this particular case, the mugger took a cell phone. Most cell phones nowadays contain a GPS chip that allows their location to be traced as precisely as a few yards. So ... how about it, law guys?
Concerned resident September 18, 2012 at 04:46 PM
Want some info that will burn City residents? The city (backed heavily by Mayor Scrace) put the public safety dept on 12 hr shifts from the old 24 hr work shift. This change has resulted in less officers per shift while causing a dramatic increase in overtime costs...on average an extra $100,000 per year to run the dept Officers have repeatedly pointed out the flaw in this system (reduced police strength and increased costs) but city admin refuses to make a change back because they simply don't want to admit they were wrong That's what it boils down to people. Our families and community are at an increased risk because the city leaders refuse to admit a mistake. How pathetic and criminal to risk our lives and families over what? Pride? We need to vote in people who will serve and protect our residents not thermselves
GP For Life September 18, 2012 at 05:48 PM
Preceded by: Stop. Frisk
John Chronos September 18, 2012 at 10:51 PM
Makes sense to me. But that might take a bit more work. And if it took the police 36 hours to get a "fast response" report out through Nixle, how long do you suppose it will take them to get that cellphone GPS tracked? Hope it doesn't take a warrant or any paperwork!
Ken Eatherly September 19, 2012 at 02:22 AM
On tracking phones: if it is a smartphone (like my iPhone) it can be traced immediately from your home computer or another smartphone. I have used this the few times I mIsplaced mine. You're right, John, it does take longer with other cell phones ... Though I think eventually they will all have quick tracking apps
Interested Bystander September 19, 2012 at 12:58 PM
Mr. Fletcher, Are there ANY Detroit residents that would be welcome to move into the Pointes?
Todd September 19, 2012 at 01:17 PM
I felt I had to update my comment. I don't know if anyone really reads these posts, but I have to admit... Today on the way to drop my kid off, I DID see a patrol car in front of Kerby School, AND our buddy that sits at Helen and Vernier was actually circling over by the middle school today. It was good.
GP For Life September 19, 2012 at 01:21 PM
I completely agree with you. If people think consolidated police forces is a good idea, they're dead wrong. Don't let them do it. Yes, there is overlap. Yes, there are redundant administrative costs. These things are really and truly de minimis in the larger picture. The reason the community is feeling the financial pinch isn't because we pay our cops or other public servants too much, it's because the tax base has taken a hit. Less homes selling for less, means less pop-up revenues. We need to hold the line and put more cops out on the street with more specific orders. When I was a wee-lad growing in GP at least once a month I would get stopped by police to chat to see if my friends and I were up to no good (we were). The fact is, then, the cops hassled everything suspicious. Now, I am not sure, but I can tell you this; it would appear the enforcement methods have changed. By the way, I know a lot of the City cops personally; and I will tell you they're all excellent cops. Their level of professionalism is above par for any department and especially one of this size.
Todd September 19, 2012 at 02:48 PM
Interested Bystander... we are immune to the race baiting. Move along. Detroit happens to GP, GP does not happen to Detroit. Lets be clear. Protecting your feelings wont keep my car from being stolen.
Mark September 19, 2012 at 03:39 PM
Right! Just standing around in The Village you got the "what are you doing? What are you boys up to? Move along."
MRSPirateLarz September 19, 2012 at 04:26 PM
Remember the acronyms that use to float by? (Not that they were nice ones) Or how you couldn't walk through Jacobson's, Damon's, etc... without getting followed by the employees and assume that there would most likely be a police officer within range the second you walked out of the store? Or when walking home from school if silly string, shaving cream, water ballons, etc... where being used the police where there to stop it in a second? Or walking/biking/blading to the parks by yourself when you were still in elementary school? Always, always had police EVERYWHERE!
GP For Life September 19, 2012 at 04:27 PM
Mark, it wasn't like the kids in the pressed khakis and crisp-clean blue oxfords were suspicious looking, either! The fuzz was hassling us because; A) they were bored and B) we were bored and the cops knew that bored kids do stupid things. They weren't normally jerks about it, just wanted to let us know they knew were up to our cheeky shenanigans.
Gary M. Wilson, Esq. September 19, 2012 at 04:32 PM
I agree with GP for Life that the City LE is pretty damn good and mostly professional. However, they can't be everywhere. A very important piece of having a safe community is the constant interaction between the police and community. If you see someone who appears suspicious, make the call. And oppose LE consolidation at every opportunity. It was a bad idea when it was surreptitiously floated by Park Commandant Hiller a couple years ago, and its even a worse idea now.
Interested Bystander September 19, 2012 at 04:35 PM
Todd, That still doesn't answer my question. Oh, wait, maybe it does. It seems I have my answer.
Julie Lattimore September 19, 2012 at 10:10 PM
I'll answer this one... Interesting Bystander, the answer is YES, as long as you take care of your home, pay your enormous taxes, hopefully contribute to the betterment of children & community, and treat others kindly, we would welcome you. On the other hand, if you are one who likes to scribble on buildings, throw your trash on the ground, break into cars at night & homes during the day, threaten young girls with guns... then we probably don't want you, no matter what your nationality is.
Katie September 20, 2012 at 02:21 PM
What is going on in our backyard... http://www.crimemapping.com/map.aspx?loc=detroit
Interested Bystander September 20, 2012 at 03:34 PM
Ms. Lattimore, Thank you for your reply. Your answer was one I was hoping to hear. My intention was not to "race bait." However, some of the comments by your fellow residents prompted me to pose my question. I sincerely believe that one should not condemn a whole group of people for the actions (or even comments) of a few. I have many friends who live in the Pointes (black and white), and those who moved there from the City have found a peace in a place where they are not afraid for their children to walk to and from school or the park. A place where they can be active in community events. And yes, I took some offense to the remark, "Surely as rats jump off a sinking ship, the residents of Detroit are bailing on thier city. The leafy neighborhoods of GP make an all too inviting nest." I have proclaimed myself as a "Suburbanite trapped in the City," because I too, take care of my home, pay my taxes, contribute to the betterment of my children and community (as best I can in Detroit), and treat others kindly. My husband and I make sure that we are the example we want our children to see: degreed, hard-working and diciplined people who know how to conduct oneself. We have been looking into various communities where we might consider purchasing a new home, and yes, the Pointes were on our radar, but not if we'll be considered part of the "horde." Thank you again.
Todd September 24, 2012 at 08:00 PM
LOL.... The Interested Bystander (one free of guilt or association) has now judged us. Lets be clear. If you get with the program and take care of yourself and your kids, you are welcome. If you are the Detroit resident that goes phishing on a GP community website to prove some big conspiracy thing..... then thanks, but no thanks. You have plenty of work to do in your own neighborhood. If that is intimidating to you, then make a decision. I'm sure we'll be fine either way. Are we all labeled up now? You good?
Interested Bystander September 25, 2012 at 01:07 PM
Todd, I merely asked a simple question to Mr. Fletcher, that has somehow really ruffled your feathers. That was NOT my intent. I am in no way judging, I'm just saying that I took offense to some of his comments, and you feel the need to defend them. Fine - that's your choice. I'm not laying guilt. You seem to bring it on your own. I still believe one should not condemn a whole group of people for the actions/comments of a few. So it seems that we are all labled up. Here's your sign. I'm good.

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