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Benton Harbor officer charged with four-year felony after ramming suspect with car

51-year-old patrol officer Steven Johnson (pictured) then turned into a business driveway/alleyway near the 100 block of North Fair Avenue in pursuit of Ronald Glover Jr. and, according to squad car camera, struck Glover with his vehicle after he had already appeared in front of the vehicle for several seconds. (Courtesy)

A patrol officer with the Benton Harbor Department of Public Safety has been charged with a felony that comes with a possible four-year sentence after allegedly purposefully striking a runaway suspect with his squad car, according to a press release from Berrien County prosecutor Michael Sepic.

Officers from BHDPS responded to a dispatch call on Thursday, May 10 around 1:45 a.m. to a man with a lawn mower with an intention to investigate if the mower was stolen. On their way, they came upon a man, later identified as 25-year-old Ronald Glover Jr., on a bicycle who was riding without a headlight. Glover was stopped for violating state law and city ordinance, but refused to speak with officers before dropping his bike and running.

51-year-old patrol officer Steven Johnson then turned into a business driveway/alleyway near the 100 block of North Fair Avenue in pursuit of Glover and, according to squad car camera, struck Glover with his vehicle after he had already appeared in front of the vehicle for several seconds.

After an independent investigation by Michigan State Police from the 5th District Headquarters in Paw Paw and reports, squad car video and body-cam footage were submitted to the prosecutor's office, it was determined Johnson would be charged with assault with a dangerous weapon, carrying a four-year felony.

Johnson has since been terminated from BHDPS and was arraigned on Wednesday with a personal recognizance bond of $1,500. Johnson is scheduled for pre-examination on July 20 and a preliminary hearing on July 26, both at 8:30 a.m. in St. Joseph.

After the incident, Glover was sent to Lakeland Hospital and treated before being released. Glover was on parole at the time and later pled guilty to resisting and obstructing a police officer and possession of marijuana with intent to deliver. He was sentenced on June 25 to a one year in the Berrien County jail.


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