HASTINGS, Mich. (WOOD) — A man accused of leading police on a car chase through three counties faces a slew of criminal charges.
Michael Bilbrey, of Marshall, was charged in Barry County Wednesday with three felony counts of third-degree fleeing police, four felony counts of assault with a dangerous weapon, a misdemeanor count of reckless driving, two misdemeanor counts of failure to stop after a collision, a misdemeanor count of driving on a suspended, revoked or denied license, a misdemeanor count of operating while intoxicated.
The Barry County Prosecutor’s Office added that more charges may be forthcoming.
The Calhoun County Sheriff’s Office says Bilbrey stole a truck from a landscaping business near Battle Creek on Tuesday morning. The owner — who knows the suspect — tracked him to another nearby business and confronted him. Deputies said the two got into a fight. Bilbrey then stole a second flatbed pickup truck from the second business and crashed it through a closed garage door, deputies say.
The suspect proceeded to lead deputies on a chase through Calhoun County, into Barry County and finally into Eaton County, where he was ultimately arrested. The prosecutor’s office says he ignored red lights and stop signs, ran over barriers and off the road and hit at least two other cars. At one point, the sheriff’s office said, he tried to ramp a cruiser, though the deputy driving moved in time.
“We commend law enforcement from several departments in Barry, Calhoun and Eaton Counties for their efforts to stop Mr. Bilbrey from his dangerous spree,” Barry County Prosecutor Julie Nakfoor Pratt wrote in a Wednesday statement.
Bilbrey’s bond was set at $100,000. He’s expected back in court on Feb. 2.
The fleeing charge he faces is punishable by up to five years in prison and the assault charge is a four-year felony. Charged as a third-time habitual offender, his maximum sentence would be doubled if he is convicted.