Suspect held in carjacking death
A woman accused of stealing a 76-year-old man's pickup at a Waterford Township Burger King and running over him had walked away from a nearby drug treatment center, police said Monday.
Clifford Van Haywald, who was killed Sunday, was a retired General Motors assembly worker and regular customer at the fast-food restaurant.
Employees nicknamed him "Pops."
"He was there twice a day, three or four times a week," Detective Sgt. Brent Ross said.
Police identified the woman as Ruth Pozdol, 38, who has no known last address but lived in Milford at one point.
Pozdol was picked up by Walled Lake police Sunday night and brought to Waterford Township, said Waterford police Sgt. Chet Bartle.
Arraignment in the carjacking death is expected by Tuesday, he said.
Ross said Detroit police found the victim's 2001 burned red Chevrolet pickup early Monday on the city's west side.
Ross said the woman was staying at a drug treatment center near the Burger King but was free to leave at any time.
Haywald was visiting the restaurant near M-59 and Williams Lake Road about 11 a.m. Sunday when the suspect asked Haywald if she could use his cellphone in the parking lot.
"He was very friendly," said his granddaughter Amber Davis.
"He was old school like that. He would help anyone."
So he likely just handed it over, Davis said, thinking she needed to make a call.
But according to police, Pozdol wanted something else from Haywald.
"She snatched the keys from his hand," Ross said. "She was able to get into the (pickup), start it and get away. That's when she drove over him."
Haywald, who lived in Walled Lake, was struck by a door and fell under the tires, Ross said.
Anyone who has information about the incident is asked to call Ross at (248) 618-6105 or (248) 674-COPS.
Haywald is survived by four children and three grandchildren, Davis said. The family has set up a gofundme account to help defray funeral costs. Go to gofundme.com/clifford to donate.