A Central Michigan University student was charged with assaulting an officer, and carrying a weapon with criminal intent on Nov. 26.
Rachel Harrison, a Stanwood sophomore, was arraigned the same day for carrying a dangerous weapon with intent, felonious assault and assaulting or obstructing an officer. The three felonies are punishable by five, four and two-year penalties, respectively.
Jeff Thompson, public information officer for the Mount Pleasant Police Department, confirmed Harrison was involved in an altercation with a detective involving a 3-inch, dual blade hunting knife outside the Phi Mu sorority house, located at 802 S. Main St. on Nov. 24.
As a photojournalism student, Harrison is also a member of the Phi Mu sorority’s CMU chapter.
MPPD Detective Angela Brown was listed as both the reporting officer and a victim of the crime in court documents. Brown had been deputized to the Bay Area Narcotics Enforcement Team, who are handling the case.
“We had had an ongoing issue,” Thompson said. “The young ladies living at that sorority were having problems with vandalism. That’s why we were in that area that day.”
According to the police report, Harrison approached the unmarked BAYANET vehicle with two detectives doing undercover surveillance of the Phi Mu house and told Brown that “she was scared and really needed to talk to her about something.”
Harrison then attempted to get into the back seat of the vehicle behind Brown. Harrison was then told by Brown that she could sit in the front seat after she moved her badge and radio from the seat.
After seeing Brown’s badge, Harrison reportedly said, “OK, I need to get in the car.”
The affidavit said Brown saw Harrison’s hands in front of her making assertive movements. Harrison allegedly had an object in her right hand while her left hand slowly moved toward the right hand.
The interior dome light of the vehicle was not on, according to the affidavit, so Brown could not see what Harrison had in her hands.
Brown reported hearing the sound of a knife locking into place, a sound familiar to her through training and experience. Brown then exited the vehicle “for fear that she was going to be assaulted with a knife,” according to the police report.
Brown then asked Harrison if she had a knife. Harrison said yes.
According to the affidavit, Harrison was leaning toward the driver’s seat and said, “I have a problem with you.”
Harrison was then told to get out of the vehicle and drop the knife. Brown went to the back end of the vehicle, and Harrison followed with the knife in her right hand at waist level, pointing the knife at Brown.
According to the police report, Brown gave Harrison several commands to drop the knife. Harrison did not drop it until Brown pointed her gun directly at her.
Harrison is being represented by Mount Pleasant defense attorney Thomas Bromell. Harrison’s preliminary examination was Dec. 5, but later rescheduled. A court date has not been set yet.
For more updates on this story, check back with Central Michigan Life.