Neighbors ‘ripped from our sleep’ in deputy-involved shooting in Eaton County


EATON COUNTY, Mich. (WLNS) — A man in a stolen car led an Ionia County deputy on a chase from Ionia County, through Clinton County and was shot dead after colliding with a pursuing deputy in Eaton County around 5:30 a.m. on Wednesday.

It happened in the 200 block of Charlotte Street in Mulliken — a town of just more than 500 people and neighbors say it was the last thing they expected.


“We were ripped from our sleep at 530 this morning by the pow, pow, pow, pow, pow,” said Jennifer Smith, who lives just two doors down from where the stolen car finally came to a stop. “My husband flew out the door and all you seen was flashing lights and you could hear the cops hollering to the suspect.

“It was scary because we have a 12-year-old that was here and woke her from her sleep. It’s just
unnerving that it’s happening so close.”

As of Wednesday afternoon, there was no known information about the suspect, other than he was a man driving a stolen vehicle. Officers on scene Wednesday morning had not identified the suspect, where he was from or who the stolen car belonged to.

It also remains unclear if the suspect fired shots, but the deputy involved in the shooting was not injured. As is standard operating procedure, that deputy has been placed on paid administrative leave while an investigation is conducted.

At some point during the gun fire, a bullet struck a home near by and one of the occupants detailed to 6 News what she saw.

“Heard some sirens approaching, at least two sirens which is abnormal in this area anyway,” said Abby Staley. “They stayed really close, I heard a crash…then I heard five or six gunshots which again is additionally abnormal in this area.

“I peaked out the front door, saw there was a bullet hole in our Florida room’s window … The front of the deputy’s car was connected to the back of the truck, almost like it was pushing it along.”

While some neighbors say they’re shaken, they added they’re glad nobody from their community was hurt.

“Everyone at least there is okay and around here is okay,” Smith said. (Things like) this happens everywhere, it’s just unfortunate it ended here today.”

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.