Thursday, April 22, 2021

State legislator facing multiple charges after crash

State Rep. Jewell Jones
State Rep. Jewell Jones, D-Inkster, 26, was arraigned Friday on multiple charges stemming from a single-car accident last week when he crashed his Chevy Tahoe into a ditch.

Jones is charged with four counts of resisting and obstructing a police officer which is punishable by up to two years in prison. Jones is separately charged with resisting and obstructing two Michigan State Police troopers, one Fowlerville police officer and one paramedic, according to the court complaint.

He is also charged with operating a motor vehicle with a high blood alcohol content, operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated, possession of a weapon while under the influence of alcohol and reckless driving. Jones had a blood alcohol content of at least 0.17 percent, according to the prosecutor, which is more than twice the legal limit of 0.08 percent.

During the arraignment in 53rd District Court in Howell, prosecutors said that Jones was so adversarial and confrontational at the scene of the crash on I-96, state troopers used a Taser and pepper spray in an effort to subdue him. Prosecutors alleged in court that Jones was driving so erratically before crashing into a ditch April 6 that numerous calls were placed to 911 by other drivers on the expressway. Most identified his vehicle by the vanity plate which read ELECTED.

When troopers arrived on the scene, they found Jones behind the wheel of the damaged vehicle along with an unidentified passenger who needed medical care. Jones became extremely confrontational at the scene with both emergency medical technicians and police, the prosecutor said. He produced badges of various types rather than the identification requested by officers to show “his status of importance, as he put it,” the prosecutor told the magistrate during the arraignment. Additionally, officers found a semi-automatic .40 caliber Glock handgun in the cup holder of the vehicle. 

Magistrate Jerry Sherwood released Jones, who was arrested and spent the night of the accident in jail and was released the next morning, on a $15,000 personal bond and ordered him to abstain from alcohol, illegal drugs and recreational marijuana, submit to random drug and alcohol testing, and surrender to the Michigan State Police all weapons except those he needs for his Michigan National Guard duty.

Jones is currently serving his third term as a state lawmaker in the 11th District, which covers Inkster, Garden City and a portion of Westland. Following his term on the Inkster City Council, he was elected as the youngest-ever state House representative at the age of 20.