UPDATE: Facebook post led to BH officer firing, charges
ABC57 is learning a Facebook post and message, sent to and seen by the mayor, led to the investigation and subsequent firing of a public safety officer.
Former officer, Steve Johnson, is accused of purposefully running over Ron Glover Junior with his department SUV during an incident in May of this year. According to court documents, police were trying to stop Glover for riding a bicycle without a headlight. Glover did not stop for officers and eventually took off running. The report, submitted by the Michigan State Police, says while Johnson stated that Glover ran in front of his squad car, dash cam video shows Glover was running away from the vehicle when Johnson hit him.
Mayor Marcus Mohammad says he knew 25-year-old Ron Glover Junior from when Glover was in high school. Mohammad worked at the school at that time. Mohammad tells ABC57 news that Glover's mother reached out to him via social media. He then passed that information along to the Director of Public Safety, Dan McGinnis.
“(After watching the video and contacting the city manager) We immediately put Steve Johnson, contacted him via the phone, and put him on administrative leave.” McGinnis said.
McGinnis says he also contacted Berrien County Prosecuting Attorney, Mike Sepic. Sepic then contacted the Michigan State Police to request they conduct a criminal investigation. During that time, an internal investigation was conducted and Johnson was terminated.
“We thought there was something wrong. We took immediate action." McGinnis said.
We asked McGinnis if he believes Johnson lied on his initial police report.
"I will say that the statements on the report and the video do not coincide." He said.
Johnson's attorney, Marc Curtis tells ABC57 news that the incident was purely and accident.
"This was an accident. There was no intent." He said.
ABC57 News also learned that Johnson is trying to get his job back. He filed a grievance through the police union. An attorney with the Fraternal Order of Police says they're also asking for back-pay. The grievance process is currently on hold until the criminal charges are dealt with.
Johnson is due back in court on July, 20th.