TRAVERSE CITY — Oakley Pike had a split second to react.
Pike drove a Cherry Capital Cab van south on Union Street at about 12:30 a.m. Saturday and stopped at the blinking red light at Front Street. As he pulled into the intersection, he saw a car barreling down Front Street at highway speed.
"By the time I saw him coming at me, it was too late. I sped up to try to get out of the way, but he crashed into me," Pike said. "At the speed he was going, there was nothing I could do."
Police believe a Long Lake Township man, 21, was drunk and traveling at least 60 miles per hour on Front Street when he slammed into the cab. He might face felony charges tied to people he injured in the crash.
Two women in the cab, Kayla Casciano and Amanda Aldrich, both 22, were injured. Pike also was injured. None of the injuries were life-threatening, but police said one of the women suffered a broken vertebrae. Casciano was in fair condition Monday at Munson Medical Center, while Pike and Aldrich were treated and released.
Authorities did not identify the suspect. Grand Traverse Prosecutor Alan Schneider said he'll wait to see medical reports detailing the exact nature and severity of the injuries before he makes a charging decision. The suspect could face felony charges of operating while intoxicated causing serious injury if the injuries are severe enough.
The suspect's behavior was incredibly reckless, police said.
"Just after midnight Friday night, there's still a lot of people in the downtown area," Capt. Brian Heffner said. "To get to speeds of 60 to 70 miles per hour — some witnesses said he was going more like 80 miles per hour — down Front Street is extremely dangerous."
The suspect told officers he was "booze cruising" in an area where he believed he wouldn't be pulled over, according to a police report. He started drinking whiskey as he was driving around, then switched to vodka. Police said he had a roughly 0.19 blood alcohol content when tested after the crash.
"He did make several ... utterances that he 'screwed up' and just wanted to go to jail," a police report said.
Heffner is glad no one was killed.
"Although the injuries were serious enough, it could have been much worse," he said.
Doug Dornbos, owner of Cherry Capital Cab, agreed.
"We really want to provide a safe ride home to drunk drivers, so to be hit by one is like salt in the wound," he said. "We're just really glad that everyone is alive."
Police say man was going at least 60 mph on Front Street
TRAVERSE CITY — Oakley Pike had a split second to react.
Severed line cuts Elk Rapids' Charter service
A severed fiber optic line caused an outage of Charter Communications service in the Elk Rapids area.Continued ...
Missing splash pad documents, delays raise questions
City commissioners want to know what happened to a draft report on the troubled Clinch Park splash pad during seven weeks of silence from city staff, but a key document was erased.Continued ...
Cherry Festival offers change to vendor fees
Trevor Tkach walked to the Open Space with one intention. To listen. Tkach, executive director of the National Cherry Festival, huddled Tuesday with a small group of vendors from this year's festival to hear concerns about higher booth fees, and to get feedback on sales.Continued ...
UPDATE: Antrim deputy turns himself in
An Antrim County sheriff's deputy accused of stealing money during an investigation has been charged with obstruction of justice and larceny in a building, both felonies.Continued ...
Candidates file for NMC, TCAPS boards
Northwestern Michigan College and Traverse City Area Public Schools will have new faces on their governing boards after November's general election.Continued ...
Two pedestrians hit on Division
An Alanson woman was seriously injured when she and a friend were struck by a car on Division Street.Continued ...
Sam's Club stone fruits recalled
A California-based packing company is recalling stone fruit that could be contaminated by listeria bacteria and was sold in stores across the country, including at the Traverse City Sam’s Club.Continued ...
Construction in progress
TRAVERSE CITY – Todd and Carter Oosterhouse want their new winery on Old Mission Peninsula to attract a new market – locals.“We want people to sit around and hang out,” Carter Oosterhouse said. “The wineries do tremendously well up here; we feel likeContinued ...
Vineyards expect big crop losses
TRAVERSE CITY – Grand Traverse region wineries won't have much to celebrate come harvest time this year. Sam Simpson, general manager of Good Harbor Vineyards in Lake Leelanau, expects to lose 70 to 90 percent of the vineyards' fruit this year. HigheContinued ...
Hearing delayed in child abuse, torture case
A judge delayed a preliminary examination for two Long Lake Township residents accused of abusing and torturing a 4-year-old child.Continued ...
Antrim County deputy faces obstruction of justice, larceny charges
TRAVERSE CITY — An Antrim County sheriff's deputy is charged with obstruction of justice and larceny in a building, both felonies. Michael Ryan Bingham, 30, was arraigned Tuesday morning in Bellaire by Judge Thomas Phillips in 86th District Court. BContinued ...
At least two weeks until Maxbauer's can reopen
TRAVERSE CITY — Contents of two coolers, that's all Mark Wilson could salvage after a grease fire broke out in the smoke house at Maxbauer's Meat Market. Wilson, co-owner of the store, was busy Tuesday with Michigan Department of Agriculture inspectContinued ...
Festival celebrates misunderstood wine, region
TRAVERSE CITY – Many casual wine drinkers consider Riesling a sweet, syrupy, simple white wine, but winemaker Bryan Ulbrich knows better. "It's really a transparent grape. It reflects where it was grown more than any other grape variety," he said. "YContinued ...
Riverside Title changing ownership
ELK RAPIDS — The region's real estate market was far different when Rob and Marcy Ford started Riverside Title in 1992. "Elk Rapids really hadn’t taken off at that point, and we had to prove it was big enough to support a title company," said Rob ForContinued ...
Proposed hotel deal a no-go as TCAPS searches for host families
TRAVERSE CITY — A Traverse City Area Public Schools proposal to house Chinese exchange students at local hotels won't come to fruition this year. Instead, the Beijing-based Weiming Education Group is upping the ante by offering host families $600 perContinued ...
Dolan to leave NMC
Northwestern Michigan College’s head of public relations and marketing is leaving.Continued ...
- Monday, July 21, 2014
Commissioners adopt cafe ordinance, drop platform dining
John McGee had plans to build a deck that seats 40 people in two parking spaces in front of his Park Street restaurant but those plans will wait as city commissioners postponed action on parking-space platform dining indefinitely.Continued ...
Deputies catch bicycle-riding suspects
Grand Traverse County Sheriff's deputies cited two boys suspected of shoplifting condoms and drinking alcohol after chasing the bike-riding minors through a drive-in restaurant and a mini golf course.Continued ...
Red Ginger to reopen
Pam and Dan Marsh hope for a crush of a different kind when they reopen their Red Ginger Restaurant almost eight weeks after a column collapsed and closed the popular downtown eatery.Continued ...
4-H livestock donations will feed the hungry
Goodwill Northern Michigan and 4-H hope crowdfunding packs more locally-sourced meat into local food charities.Continued ...
House candidates to appear in forum
The 10 people running in Michigan's most crowded House race will appear side by side to answer questions.Continued ...
Farmers could get money for 2012 losses
Jim Bardenhagen is no different from other farmers across Michigan: late frosts in 2012 destroyed his cherry crop.Continued ...
Deadline to file for local school boards is 4 p.m. Tuesday
The petition-filing deadline for candidates interested in sitting on local school boards is 4 p.m. Tuesday.Continued ...
UPDATE: Maxbauer's market closes after fire
More than meat was smoking when a grease fire broke out at Maxbauer's Meat Market. The Union Street store closed Monday after the fire started in the market's smokehouse at about 10:30 a.m.Continued ...
Division, Boughey streets lane closures planned
Commuters on Division Street heading north can expect delays when work crews close one northbound lane to install a new curb at the alley between Seventh and Eighth streets.Continued ...
- Severed line cuts Elk Rapids' Charter service