CORUNNA — A jury took just more than an hour Tuesday to acquit an Owosso man of three felony counts of resisting/obstructing a police officer in 35th Circuit Court.
Kevin Faber, 26, also was charged with numerous other felony counts, including malicious destruction of personal property ($1,000-$20,000), assault with a dangerous weapon and one misdemeanor count of domestic violence following a Sept. 7, 2019, incident at his Owosso home.
Faber was accused of attempting to assault three Owosso police officers trying to serve a warrant for a disorderly house civil infraction issued by the city, for which Faber did not appear for a court date.
Faber admitted when he took the stand during the trial that he had been drinking heavily the night of Sept. 7, 2019, came home, and went to bed in his room.
When police attempted to serve the warrant, they saw Faber enter his residence and tried numerous times to get him to come outside or answer the door.
“I didn’t think there was any reason for the police to be there,” Faber said Monday. He added that when police were shouting for him to come outside, they didn’t announce they had a warrant until after they had already used a ram to break down the door, and he “fell out of bed.”
After police entered the home they went into Faber’s bedroom “within 30 seconds,” Faber said. They told him to place his hands over his head, and Faber claims he did so after hesitating for a moment.
Police officers testified Faber tried to head butt them, while Faber claimed his hair was in his eyes and, since he was handcuffed, he was moving his head in order to be able to see.
He was arrested at the time of the incident, and lodged at the Shiawassee County Jail. He was arraigned Sept. 10, 2019, before 66th District Court Judge Terrance Dignan; Faber pleaded not guilty.
Due to an uncooperative witness, all counts except the resisting/obstructing charges were dismissed before trial by prosecutors.
“You may think this is overkill,” Assistant Prosecutor Charles Quick told the jury in his closing remarks. “No, there were three separate criminal acts, one toward each police officer. We could have charged him with more.”
Following Monday’s verdict, defense attorney Amy Husted said the public defender’s office has been looking for a trial case to look at for guidance in the future. She told the jury in her closing statement that Faber was “well within his rights not to answer the door,” since police admitted they did not announce they had a warrant until they were inside Faber’s residence.
After closing arguments, the jury was given instructions and sent to deliberate at 4:07 p.m.; they reached a unanimous verdict at 5:10 p.m.
Thirty-fifth Circuit Court Judge Matthew Stewart thanked the jury for their service and dismissed them.
Faber, who had been held in jail while awaiting trial, was transferred back to the Shiawassee County Jail for immediate release.
The jury’s decision marks the sixth consecutive felony trial in Shiawassee County that has failed to yield a guilty verdict.