Man who shot 2 Detroit cops takes plea deal

Oralandar Brand-Williams
The Detroit News

Detroit — A 20-year-old Detroit man pleaded guilty in a deal Monday to the April wounding of two Detroit police officers on the city’s northwest side.

Juwan Plummer’s attorney, Victoria Burton-Harris, had maintained that Plummer believed the officers were burglars trying to break into his family’s home April 16 in the 20500 block of Lesure when he fired his weapon.

Plummer pleaded guilty before Wayne County Circuit Court Judge Michael Hathaway on Monday to charges including two counts of intentional discharge of a firearm in a building, causing serious injury. The charges carry up to 15 years in prison and a $15,000 fine.

As part of his plea, two counts of felonious assault were dismissed. Plummer will be sentenced before Hathaway at 9 a.m. Aug. 30.

Judge Kenneth King of 36th District Court said earlier he believed Plummer was fearful and was “very much afraid” when he heard knocking on the door of his family’s home in the late hours on April 16. But he questioned whether the man had a “reasonable” belief a break-in was underway.

Police officers were responding to a report that a break-in was occurring at an unoccupied home across the street, according to testimony in Plummer’s preliminary examination last May.

One of the officers who was shot, Tyler Simmons, who works in the 12th precinct, testified that he and his partner received a call that someone in Plummer’s home had reported a break-in in progress at the unoccupied home across the street.

Simmons said he and his partner went toward Plummer’s home when they could not find an evidence of a break-in.

The officer said he went up to the door and starting knocking hard on the steel grating with his fists and then his department-issued flashlight.

Simmons testified he knocked first, heard a dog barking and then announced he was an officer. Then he heard a bang and felt “a burning sensation on the left side of my body.”

Simmons testified he ran down to the driveway, joining his partner, and heard a shot.

Simmons said he returned fire and called for help, screaming: “Officer down! Officer down! Detroit Police!”

Following his preliminary examination, Plummer told reporters he never “had any bad intentions” when he shot at the police officers.

“I just wanted to protect my family,” said Plummer on May 5 outside the Frank Murphy Hall of Justice where his preliminary examination was held before King. “We live in a neighborhood where police don’t really patrol our neighborhood as they should, so I had to do what I had to do to protect my family. I’m basically the man of the house.”

King said following the hearing in May and his decision to bind Plummer over for trial that he didn’t “believe the defendant set out to harm the police officers.”

King added Plummer “seems very remorseful.”

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