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Three Metro Detroit men have been charged after a "quick-thinking" local Lyft driver noticed suspicious activity at stops the men requested during the ride.

Macomb County Prosecutor Eric Smith credits the driver for preventing what could have been a serious crime, according to a release from his office.

The incident occurred at approximately 10 p.m. June 25 when Warren police responded to a call from the spouse of the Lyft driver requesting a welfare check. The driver had texted his wife to report suspicious activity by four men he was transporting.

Police say the Lyft driver picked up three men at two stops in Detroit. The men placed bags in the trunk of the vehicle and asked the driver to make multiple stops, including one at a gas station, where a bag was removed from the trunk and placed in another vehicle. 

"The bravery of the Lyft driver, reporting the suspicious activity of his passengers, must be commended," Smith said in the release. 

Mikal Cooper, 22, of Detroit and Brandon Walton, 20, of Harper Woods were both charged with carrying a concealed weapon, a five-year felony, and Devin Howard, 22, of Detroit was charged with assaulting/resisting/obstructing causing injury, a four-year felony, involving a police officer and assaulting/resisting/obstructing, a two-year felony, involving a police officer. .

Police met the Lyft driver and confronted the individuals when the vehicle made a stop at the Hawthorne Suites in Warren.

Police allege the men were uncooperative and disregarded officer instructions and that Cooper and Walton were in possession of two loaded .40 caliber handguns. Police also say Howard was verbally and physically confrontational toward police and had to be taken to the ground and subdued with pepper spray after causing minor injuries to police.

The officers' injuries were not disclosed.

The suspects were arraigned in 37th District Court in Warren on June 26. Walton and Howard posted bond while Cooper remained in jail on a $25,000 bond.

The three face arraignment in Macomb Circuit Court on July 29.

charrison@detroitnews.com

(313) 222-6651

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