Allegan County News & Union Enterprise News

Assault charges, crimes against police rise in county

By John Raffel

ALLEGAN – Allegan County Prosecuting Attorney Myrene Koch delivered her annual report to the Board of Commissioners Sept. 28.
“The usual review of law enforcement activities included a surprise visitor, Joey, the canine therapy counselor used primarily with children called to court to testify,” commission chairman James Storey said. “According to Koch, Joey calms and comforts children while they testify. Some adults also find Joey to be therapeutic.
“Among the highlights of her report, Koch noted that the introduction of body cameras worn by deputies and other police officers has added new requirements for her office. As body camera footage is used in developing cases for court action, the footage must also be copied and supplied to defense counsels. The time required to copy the case-relevant footage and transfer it to a “thumb” drive has added administrative challenges to her staff.”
Storey said The prosecutor said that the type of crimes in the county changed somewhat in 2022 which is the year for which she assembled her report.
“In 2022 Assaults became the No. 1 most charged crime at 342 charges, which is a 44 percent increase since 2012, Crimes Against Police was No. 2 with 304 charges, which is a 51.2 percent increase,” Storey said. “The Crimes Against Police category includes resisting and obstructing arrest with Injury (9) and Fleeing (65). Controlled Substance moved to No. 3 at 284 charges.
“In 2022, felony assault crimes increased being charged 105 more times than in 2012 (44.3 percent increase) which includes Strangulation (56), Domestic Violence (61), Felonious Assault (83) and Stalking (29). Several commissioners congratulated Koch for appealing the low bond amount levied for the perpetrator of the Dorr Township assault on a sheriff’s deputy. Koch said she will act aggressively within the law to bring justice to those who assault law enforcement officers.”

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