By Paul Garrod
A South Haven man and a Bangor woman, each wanted on multiple felony warrants and warrants, respectively, now face additional charges after they led authorities on a vehicle pursuit through Lawrence, Hartford and Arlington townships, Thursday afternoon, Sept. 21, according to a press release from the Van Buren County Sheriff’s Office.
Van Buren County Sheriff Daniel Abbott said Van Buren County Sheriff’s deputies were involved in a vehicle pursuit with wanted subjects that were in possession of a sawed-off shotgun. A deputy was on patrol near the Village of Lawrence when a vehicle with multiple traffic violations and a driver wearing a ski mask in 80-degree weather drove by. The deputy attempted to initiate a traffic stop but the driver fled south on 54th Street. The vehicle continued to not stop and traveled west on Red Arrow Highway to 62nd Street, then back east on Red Arrow Highway and north on County Road 681. The driver lost control at the intersection of County Road 681 and 42nd Avenue. The suspect driver immediately fled on foot but was apprehended within minutes. The female passenger remained in the vehicle and was taken into custody without issue. The driver was identified as Johnathan Thomas Ethell, 37, of South Haven. Ethell was wanted on multiple felony warrants, including armed robbery and burglary.
The passenger, Morgan Whitnee McGaw, 32, of Bangor, was arrested on multiple warrants as well, including failure to appear.
Sheriff Abbott said the flee and elude, resist and obstruct, possession of a sawed-off shotgun and possession of narcotics complaint will be submitted to the Van Buren County Prosecutor’s Office for review of charges. The incident remains under investigation.
Assisting agencies included Michigan State Police and Hartford and Bangor police departments.