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Cops: Mall robbery suspect turns self in, bites officer

George Hunter
The Detroit News

A 26-year-old man suspected in a weekend jewelry store robbery at Twelve Oaks Mall likely will face additional charges for allegedly biting an officer and kicking out the windows of a Novi police squad car, police said.

The suspect, one of three men allegedly involved in Saturday’s smash-and-grab robbery at Tapper’s jewelry store, turned himself in to Detroit’s 6th Precinct on Monday, after photographs of him and his two alleged accomplices were released to the media, Novi Detective Sgt. Scott Baetens said.

“Yesterday, he voluntarily surrendered to the Detroit police,” Baetens said. “Our officers responded to take custody, and during the exchange he fled on foot.”

After a brief foot chase, officers caught the man and put him in the backseat of the patrol car, Baetens said.

“He proceeded to kick out two of the car’s rear windows,” Baetens said. “Officers received scratch marks, abrasions and burns. One of the officers was bitten.

“We’re still speaking with him and trying to ascertain why that happened, and get his version of it.”

Baetens added Novi police will work with Wayne County prosecutors to determine what charges will be filed against the man, in addition to the robbery charges.

The man’s two alleged accomplices remain on the loose, Baetens said.

Twelve Oaks Mall was evacuated Sunday after the 6 p.m. robbery, in which one of the three men allegedly broke the jewelry case with a small hammer before they made off with two expensive watches.

Some in the mall mistook the sound of breaking glass for gunshots, and the mall was evacuated as a precaution, although it was later determined there had been no gunfire.

At least one of the suspects reportedly escaped in a gold Chrysler 200.

Anyone with information is asked to call Novi Police at (248) 348-7100.

(313) 222-2134

Twitter: @GeorgeHunter_DN